How can I persuade my employer to act on climate change?

There are plenty of compelling business arguments that you can use to win your employer over to greener working. These include:

  • Reduced costs. Efficiency can cut the amount the company spends on power, consumables, waste management and disposal, water bills, hardware and transport bills.
  • Reputation. Customers, workers and potential recruits all prefer companies with a clean, green record.
  • An investment in the future. Whether for ethical or financial reasons, increasing numbers of investors prefer businesses that have environmentally responsible policies. Companies need to be ready for the challenges of climate change: almost 80% of the FTSE 100 companies have identified climate change as a business risk, according to the Carbon Neutral Company
  • Tax savings and subsidies. Reducing environmental impact can have tax benefits, and there are also government grants and subsidies available for actions in some areas. There's more about green taxes and relief on the GOV.UK website.

There are lots of pressures on businesses to be taking action on issues such as energy use – not least unpredictable fuel prices. You may find, once you start asking, that some of the issues are already being looked at, and that your employer welcomes staff interest and involvement in making changes. After all, most changes in working practices don’t stand much chance if workers don’t understand or support them. 

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.

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