Every person, organisation and building in the world has a carbon footprint. Over the last 10 or so years a lot of focus has been on knowing what your carbon footprint is, and reducing it as much as possible. But not as much focus on business and residential business owners doing the same thing. So today we’re going to talk about what a carbon footprint is, why it matters and how using a heat pump could help reduce yours.
What Is A Carbon Footprint?
Essentially your carbon footprint is the name for the environmental impact generated by your company activities. Specifically, the amount of carbon dioxide released into the environment by performing the activity, and how damaging it is.
For example, if you wanted to work out the carbon footprint of a bottle of water, you would need to add up all of the greenhouse gases produced by sourcing the water, manufacturing the bottle, transporting and creating the product and all of the activities within the business to get that bottle of water made and sold to you. That’s a lot to add up!
We talked a bit more about how you can work out your carbon footprint in this blog, so if you wanted to know more, give that one a read!
Why Is Reducing Your Carbon Footprint Important?
Obviously, the fewer carbon emissions that are released into the environment, the better. And everyone should be doing their part to reduce theirs. But the two biggest carbon producers are businesses and buildings, so there’s a big incentive to start there, as it will have a much bigger impact than any individual action.
There are also some business benefits to embracing carbon neutrality now and moving towards a more sustainable business model. For one thing, it will protect your reputation in the marketplace as the public outwardly condemns more and more carbon-heavy businesses. Consumers are actively choosing to work with businesses that take their carbon footprint seriously and are making positive changes, so a boost to your sales figures and general market presence are a welcome bonus.
It will also make it easier for you to transition to a more sustainable business model in the future. There are already limits being put on energy consumption and regulations around things like fossil fuels – and you can bet there will be more in the future. Lowering your emissions now in any way you can will make reacting and complying with new sustainability regulations a lot simpler for you down the line.
Finally, it will actually help your business cut costs. While investing in carbon-neutral strategies and equipment might seem expensive, most will save you an enormous amount on energy bills in the medium and long term. By lowering your carbon footprint, you lower your energy use, which in turn lowers your energy bills. And while it isn’t always viable for businesses to spend money on becoming environmentally friendly, in this case, the savings are worth it.
By cutting down the carbon footprint of those two sectors, we could significantly slow down climate change, preserve our environment and make better use of the earth’s resources.
Building Maintenance And Carbon Footprints
Commercial properties are one of the biggest contributors to greenhouse gasses, largely thanks to the multitude of systems inside that produce carbon dioxide as well as the physical act of building them. This is such a large problem that the government has actually launched a ‘Zero Carbon Buildings’ initiative, with the aim of bringing all older buildings to carbon zero by 2050, and ensuring all new buildings are constructed in a carbon neutral fashion alongside them.
Once a building has been built, the biggest source of carbon dioxide is usually the HVAC system. Older or legacy systems like gas boilers can produce around 4,500 kWh of CO2 per year, which can add up to a huge amount of carbon in the environment over the building’s lifespan. But if you change to a modern solution like a heat pump, you can cut that number to almost zero. Heat pumps produce just 220 kWh of CO2 a year because they are powered by electricity, not gas, and they last a lot longer as a result. Paired with renewable energy sources like solar panels, this single change could bring your building to almost carbon neutral within a matter of months.
At Bonus Eventus Maintenance we are passionate about the environment and reducing the carbon footprint of our own business as well as our clients. We are currently consulting with a number of block and facilities managers on the changes that would need to be made to their HVAC systems to meet this target, and if you’re in a similar position we’d love to help you too. Just get in touch with the team today for a free consultation. And if you want to know more about energy efficient HVAC solutions, keep an eye on the blog.