Today it is the objective 12.2: achieve sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources.
How can we, as a business owner integrate better practice in our business to achieve sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources?
What is a natural resource? A natural resource is what we, people, can use which comes from the natural environment. Examples of natural resources are air, water, wind, wood, fossil fuels, natural gas, iron, coal... Some of these resources are renewable, which means that Mother nature knows how to make it available again, some of these resources are not renewable, which means that once it is used, it is no longer available.
We are mainly users of these resources, so there’s little we can do about how these resources are managed. What we can do instead is to become more efficient users by choosing whenever it’s possible, the resource that is renewable and by being mindful of how the use of natural resources affects the quality of life for both present and future generations.
This is such a broad topic and so much needs to be done. Yet, we can feel really powerless as a small business owner and don’t really know where to start. My advice to you is just simply start and start today.
Start auditing just one of the aspects of your business operations.
Even if you don’t label your business as a sustainable business, there is still so much you can do to be an efficient user of natural resources.
I want you to think of the 3 Rs: Reduce, Recycle and Re-use.
Is there anything you can do to reduce the use of natural resources? What can you recycle? Is there anything you can reuse?
Talk to your team to see if these small changes really make sense and are in-line with your brand’s mission. Agree on a list of actions you want to try out.
Define a test period, at the end of the period, review what has been working if some things need to be changed, then adjust your actions.
Then repeat with another aspect of your business operations, then another one and another.
You can build this culture of more efficient use of natural resources by creating small and new habits in your business.
You will not be able to create an overnight change and you will not see immediate results, actually, you might never see the results at all, but it is important to be part of that change.With your business, you have a powerful tool to help achieve an objective of the SDGs.
So start today.