We’ve been working hard at the BBOT to help our businesses become more sustainable by providing resources, tips and a place to pledge their actions. We’re thrilled to have 105 businesses so far take the Pledge and we’re hoping for many, many more.
This year we’ve partnered with Vancity and Climate Smart to help businesses take the next step by joining 750+ businesses in becoming Climate Smart certified and offering $500 scholarships towards certification.
But what are we doing?
As part of our own sustainability ‘journey’ we’ve also decided to become Climate Smart certified. Afterall, if we’re inviting our businesses to do it, then we should it as well.
So what does this look like for us?
First step: a half day workshop where the focus is on mapping waste and energy use in order to begin the process of measuring what you are consuming (in energy) and producing (in waste) over the course of year.
What this means is working internally to identify where you get this information. A helpful hint – your accountant is your new best friend who can help you identify energy costs, paper purchasing, waste costs etc..
For me at the BBOT it means doing a little detective work. Our accountant has just left ( I miss him already) but before he goes I find out that our energy bills go to the main building supervisor. Next step – hunt down the building supervisor to find out what our square footage is and what percentage of the bill is ours. Bonus – I’ve worked here three years and have seen him around many times but have never actually spoken to him. Turns out, he’s a very nice guy and will help me to determine our square footage and total energy consumption of our building. As a super bonus he can tell me what percentage of the Zero Waste program can be attributed to our office.
Next stop – Employee Commuting – We don’t own fleets of trucks or lease cars but we all drive to work with the exception of one transit commuting employee. Now we have to determine one year’s worth of energy (GHG) emissions for our single occupancy commuters. A handy survey will helps with that.
Next – paper consumption – I just have a call in to our photocopy supplier to see where I can get that info.
A meeting with my Climate Smart coach this afternoon will tell me if I’m on the right or wrong track or what other leads I can pursue in finding out what our total GHG emissions were for calendar year 2013. Once that’s determined I can get to work entering the data into the accounting tool that’s provided to track our footprint. It’s exciting. I feel like Inspector Clousseau!