There are many consultancies which may be able to help companies to green their businesses, to meet the requirements of environmental legislation and which can provide support.
- The National Centre for Business and Sustainability (NCBS) is a non-profit, values-based consultancy organisation which provides sustainable solutions to businesses and other organisations. It is committed to helping individuals and organisations to operate in ways that deliver high levels of environmental and social performance alongside good economic return.
- The Environmental Consultancies Group (ECG) exists to promote the highest standards in environmental consultancy. It has a wide range of members providing a vast range of skills and experience in key environmental issues and maintains a register of member companies showing their particular fields of expertise. The ECG focusses on running a Quality Assurance Scheme which gives companies a simple method of identifying a shortlist of environmental consultancies, and the confidence that they have the skills and experience required.
- Best Foot Forward offers a range of software for businesses to calculate their ecological footprint in terms of hectares/acres per person and planets required if everyone had a similar lifestyle to one’s own. Their Global Office ® software allows small businesses to footprint their organisation and relate their environmental impact to cost.
- The Green Office Manual and the Business Guide to Sustainability are two of many books relating to sustainability available direct from Earthscan
- Sust-it.net has information on benchmarking office equipment and buying the most energy efficient models.
- Better Business has advice and information for small and medium sized enterprises.
In the UK businesses and industries are encouraged to improve their environmental standards through ISO14000. More details can be found on the following websites and many environmental consultants will be able to advise on gaining ISO14000 accreditation.
- ISO14000 Information Centre. This US site contains lots of information and news about ISO14000. The resources section is possibly the most helpful.
- The Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA) is a not-for-profit organisation established to promote best practice standards in environmental management, auditing and assessment.
- The Association of Sustainability Practitioners describes itself as a community of people designed to work like the natural systems around us. It is shaped by its membership, leadership is shared around,and it is based on strong social contracts between members involving both a commitment of time to each other and a disciplined approach to learning and review. Its purpose is to promote learning that transforms behaviour from unsustainable to sustainable practices.
Most local authorities will have policies regarding the environment, sustainability and climate change, and be implementing plans to ‘green’ themselves. These may include energy saving, recycling, encouraging green transportation for employees and green purchasing policies. They may also be able to provide advice and information.