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World Environment Day 2022

During our working lives – and the last 2 years in particular – we have seen developments and faced challenges that we never could have imagined. Some of them – like the now all-pervasive adoption of the internet –have been embraced and are now entirely normal to us, whereas others – like the COVID lockdowns and sanitation stations – are things that we hope to never deal with again.

Regardless of our personal opinions on them, we can all agree that businesses and workplaces have a huge role to play in the societal acceptance and adoption of new trends, and in our response to a crisis. We are now in a time of unique opportunity to review and reform our approach to work and routine. So, to celebrate World Environment Day 2022, let’s look at some ways that we can rise to meet the challenge of economic and social sustainability, to continue our own personal growth whilst respecting our planet and honouring this year’s theme - #OnlyOneEarth.

1) Maintain a Hybrid or Remote Approach

In much of the discourse up till now, this has been thought of nearly exclusively in terms of Covid management and a post-Covid ‘return to normal’. However, maintaining a hybrid work model may prove to be one of the biggest ways you can improve your company’s carbon footprint and operate more sustainably. The knock-on effects include less pollution from fewer commuters, reduced energy costs, and reduced food waste in canteens.

2) Use your campus to move away from lawns and other unfriendly manicured environments and to encourage biodiversity

We are already beginning to see this happen in Dublin, notably at Trinity College, which has replaced its lawns with wildflower meadows. Obviously we don’t all have access to this amount of land, but having plants, native lawns, or any kind of animal habitat is a step in the right direction for increasing your areas biodiversity, making it a more ecologically sustainable place to live and work.

3) Increased workplace diversity leads to reduced strain on resources and innovation

Inclusion and diversity are about so much more than meeting quotas. A diverse workforce will ensure that your company thrives, that bottlenecks are avoided, and that particular resources or products are not overwhelmed by demand while others go to waste.

4) Engage with your supply chain

This is a vital step to encourage sustainable operations and identify any opportunities for improvement in your own company and your associates. Once you understand the process, you can improve it. Talk to your suppliers and customers alike about more sustainable delivery, packaging, and communication options.

5) Reduce waste (paper-based, plastics, and food)

This is one we’ve all been working on for years already, and we’ve made great progress. Now, think about how needs will change. For example, in a post-Covid world with employees working from home, fewer supplies could be needed in the office; shared birthday cakes are a non-starter, so don’t order them and save yourself the financial and food waste.

6) Engage in public projects such as ‘Tidy Towns’, river clean ups, or planting schemes

Businesses hold a unique position within our society and communities and already use that influence in a number of ways that benefit the community, from employment through to sponsorship of a local sports team. By being visibly involved in town planting schemes; urban clean-up and regeneration schemes; and expanding the hybrid model which Covid lockdowns allowed us to explore.

So, while we may have #OnlyOneEarth there are numerous ways we can help to create an ecologically sustainable economy. What are some of your ideas, and how will you be implementing them? If you want more advice or support in this, contact us at and we can take it from there!

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