Why Your Carbon Footprint Can Affect Business Success

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We have contributed more than 375 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Its effect can be felt with climate change — from famines to air pollution. In 2019, Singapore’s carbon dioxide emissions amounted to 48.6 million tonnes, still higher than its lowest in 2016 at 48.3 million tonnes. Numerous measures to reduce its carbon footprint are still ongoing, with Singapore’s Green Plan in effect to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 2 million tonnes by 2030.

A large part of this lies in the hands of businesses operating in Singapore. Adopting a carbon-neutral approach allows the nation to collectively lower its carbon emissions. Resultingly, this will reduce the greenhouse effect we experience daily. Before understanding how you can make a difference, delving into the causes of carbon dioxide emissions is a good starting point.

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What causes carbon footprint in business?

Carbon footprint is the total volume of greenhouse gases emitted, measured in carbon dioxide units. When tracked in the business sense, it is calculated as an organisation’s total emissions, also called corporate carbon footprint. 

There are several factors that influence a business’ carbon footprint. These include the heavy reliance on expensive fossil fuels for power generation, increased electricity use, and lack of carbon-neutral transportation for business operations. According to McKinsey & Company, your supply chain can account for over 80% of your greenhouse gas emissions, indicating that the vendors you work with also have a significant part to play in your overall carbon footprint. 

So why is there an impact on your business?

1. Economic impact of corporate carbon footprint

Economically, a higher carbon footprint indicates greater energy costs. These could have been freed up for other areas of the business that matter, such as more revenue-making developments or even innovations to drive increased sustainability efforts.

2. Political impact of corporate carbon footprint

Businesses in Singapore are facing increased pressure to become more responsible for their environmental impact. The Environmental Protection and Management Act is a step in the right direction, with an aim to improve the quality of life of its people with more oversight and better management of environmental sustainability initiatives. The recent amendments to the act, which includes more regulation over heat-trapping gases and contractor’s no-work policy on Sundays and public holidays, further strengthens the nation’s resolve to attack the causes at its roots. 

Complying with such regulations is necessary to operate lawfully in Singapore.

3. Social impact of corporate carbon footprint

Today, the modern ethical consumer chooses to support green businesses. While ethical consumerism is not yet the norm in Singapore, more than half of the nation’s population at least advocate for the benefits of such movements. Experts say it will take time and thorough conversation for it to cement. 

Ensuring your business is in line with green policies prevents any potential issues of brand boycotts which could inevitably lead to huge losses.

How to reduce your carbon footprint?

Evidently, the effect carbon emissions has on business success is telling. Implementations are necessary to mitigate the impact and ensure the company can continue to progress. What are some possible ways to reduce your carbon footprint?

1. Reduce energy consumption

Switching to energy-efficient light bulbs can reduce your overall energy usage. You may, for instance, consider LED light bulbs, which can provide better quality of light, last longer and consume less energy than their traditional fluorescent counterparts.

2. Reuse & recycle

As far as you can, opt for more durable, reusable corporate assets. Any assets your business no longer needs can also be donated or sold to other organisations. 

3. Review your supply chain

Vendors, traders and industry partners in your supply chain who actively adopt green practices can decrease your business’s overall carbon footprint. Working with logistics partner like DHL Express can help you achieve this. 

How DHL is reducing its carbon footprint, for you

1. Green mile

As part of the €7 billion set aside to reduce our carbon emissions, our decarbonisation plans to establish the most energy-efficient fleet include the use of sustainable aviation fuels, with an aim to hit over 30% by 2030. We also want to electrify 60% of last-mile vehicles by the same year. 

2. Green infrastructure

By 2030, our goal is to design and construct all our new buildings with the latest carbon-neutral architecture and engineering innovations. This includes introducing sustainable energy sources to power over half of our facilities and lower greenhouse gas emissions.

3. Carbon offsetting

By investing in climate protection projects of international repute, we can assist you in offsetting your carbon footprint through our climate-neutral service, GoGreen. 

4. Data tracking

We also provide a free interactive online tool to plan shipping scenarios and determine your carbon footprint easily, with end-to-end visibility of your supply chain from all service providers in one easy-to-use application. Upon contacting our Green Logistics experts, you can begin benchmarking your air, ocean and land carbon efficiency against sector standards.