Green Council Offers Earth Day Tips for Businesses

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Columbus Chamber offers tips for businesses looking to become more environmentally-friendly for Earth Day 2011.

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If we all commit to making green initiatives a priority, Columbus will put itself on the map in terms of a progressive, environmentally-friendly region.

In honor of Earth Day 2011, set for April 22, the Columbus Chamber’s Green Council has compiled five tips for local businesses looking to become more environmentally responsible.

“Whether it’s implementing a recycling program, encouraging employees to bike to work or using environmentally friendly products in the workplace, our goal is to show business leaders how simple and cost-effective it can be to reduce their overall footprint,” said Doug Morgan, chair of the Columbus Chamber’s Green Council and partner, Hahn Loeser & Parks LLP. “If we all commit to making green initiatives a priority, Columbus will put itself on the map in terms of a progressive, environmentally-friendly region.”

The Green Council’s tips include:

Use local resources. Purchasing business materials from within the region rather than across the country not only helps to support regional economic development, it also cuts down on the carbon emissions needed to transport goods from one place to another. Take advantage of the thousands of service providers in central Ohio when it’s time to buy office supplies or fix a leaky roof.

Go paperless. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average office worker in the U.S. uses 10,000 sheets of paper each year – adding up to 4 million tons of paper used annually. Help reduce this number by refraining from printing emails and considering electronic invoices, newsletters and contracts.

Commit to recycling. Implementing a recycling program can help divert more than 70 million tons of materials (including cans, cardboard and paper) from landfills every year. Businesses in the Columbus Region can find resources for starting their own recycling programs via organizations like Recycle Downtown and Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio (SWACO).

Engage employees. In addition to making recycling a priority at your company, get employees involved in the commitment to increase environment responsibility. Efforts like Consider Biking’s 2 by 2012 initiative – to encourage each citizen to bike to work two days per month by the Columbus bicentennial in 2012 – will help to increase green transportation by 300 percent.

Spread the word. Pledge to be green via Columbus’ GreenSpot, and make your customers and vendors aware of what your business is doing. Encourage them to continue the momentum by making green efforts a priority.

For more information, visit http://www.columbus.org.

About the Columbus Chamber
The Columbus Chamber, with nearly 2,500 area businesses and organizations, supports businesses in the eight-county Columbus Region by serving as their business partner.

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Courtney Cooper
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