Climate change has moved up the agenda due to recent climatic events and pressure from environmental groups. Even some of the early doubters are concluding that we all need to do more to slow down the continuing increase in global temperatures. It has almost reached panic level as new information is released about global warming and the effect it is having on the planet.

The next UN climate change conference is to be held in Madrid between the 2nd and 13th December 2019 (COP 25) and aims to build on the agreements made in the Paris agreement at COP 24. The UK will host COP 26 in 2020.

The UK leads the world by declaring a climate emergency and the EU parliament recently followed suit, urging all EU countries to commit to zero greenhouse emissions by 2050.

Moves have been made over the last few years to encourage a reduction in the use of fossil fuels and increase the use of renewables. The UK’s low carbon sector now supports over 400,000 jobs.

Despite all these efforts, emissions are not reducing quickly enough and the changeover to renewable energy is too slow.  With global temperatures still rising, it is safe to assume that there will be a greater emphasis on speeding up the changes and legislation that will enable the UK to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

What changes can we expect for businesses

Climate-change-solutions-using-renewable-technologyIt looks increasingly likely that we can expect more directives and legislation from the government aimed at businesses that may have an impact on future finances and profits including:
  • Improve the energy performance of non-domestic buildings if not already done
  • Use more renewable energy
  • Use cleaner more sustainable transport throughout the business and supply chain
  • Encourage the reduction in the number of miles travelled by fossil fuelled cars by employees (bike to work or use public transport)
  • A possible tax on the number of flights taken during a year
  • Supply chain monitoring and more local sourcing
  • Employee engagement and training
  • Consume less and waste less
  • Recycle more.
Many large corporations have recognised the importance of having carbon emissions targets to reduce their environmental impact. Companies such as Unilever base their environmental standards framework on ISO 14001 which provides effective third-party assessments throughout their sites. Where these companies lead, smaller businesses will be expected to follow.

What is ISO 14001?

If you have not already got one, implementing an environmental management system will identify, control and reduce the effects your business operations have on the environment.

ISO 14001 certification is internationally recognised and will provide a framework to develop a climate plan and environment policy for your business.

Risk analysis is an important part of the process when achieving the standard and with all the climate change proposals and possible regulations that are coming, you will need to analyse how these will affect your business in the future.

As countries and businesses around the world continue to make these changes throughout their industries and supply chains, companies who can demonstrate they have an audited management system such as ISO 14001 will stay ahead of the changes and provide suppliers and customers with proof that they comply with the latest regulations and best practice.

Some of your customers and suppliers may even insist that you have ISO 14001 certification by a UKAS accredited Certification Body before they will work with you.

If you need a proven internationally recognised management system to help you to manage and improve your environmental performance, call one of our team on 0121 241 2299 or request a quote.