Tony March, Director of Public Sector Customers at Wave
As a category sponsor for the VIBES - Scottish Environment Business Awards, we have been incredibly impressed by the quality of entries from the green businesses announced as finalists in these prestigious environmental business awards. This recognises their commitment to tackling environmental challenges, creating a sustainable future for themselves and the communities they serve.
Now in their 19th year, the awards urge Scotland’s businesses to challenge their everyday working practices and embrace the economic opportunity of sustainability.
Sustainable best practice, as these businesses recognise, isn’t just good for the environment but is also beneficial for business performance. Many of this year’s entries report associated benefits including enhanced competitiveness, a positive working culture and both environmental and financial savings.
In its recent Programme for Government, the Scottish Governmentoutlined its ambitions to create a cleaner, greener Scotland, creating a growing, sustainable and inclusive economy. This included an ambitious target to become target neutral by 2050, a target that will clearly continue to drive business behaviour.
Within the Scottish Government's overall climate change agenda there is a welcome recognition that taking action can provide wide economic and social benefits, such as delivering new jobs, improved air quality, and positive health outcomes. This ties neatly in with the ethos of the VIBES Awards.
Private businesses and the public sector will play a vital role in the delivery of a low carbon economy, this worthy ambition is set against the challenges of a background of continuing budgetary pressures and a continuing demand for high-quality service.
There are many superb examples of businesses and organisations in Scotland taking significant steps to improve or reduce their impact on the environment, often saving money in the process. As an example, our Active Water Management® (AWM) service helps to reduce the amount of water used, achieving substantial savings.
We aim to try and understand exactly how much water our customers use and to find ways to help them reduce their consumption and save money. Water and energy use is generally a significant operational cost and reducing these can directly benefit the bottom line, saving vital resources in a cash constrained environment.
Saving water will reduce not only your water bill, but also your energy bill, as heating less water reduces energy consumption. In addition, the water industry is the fourth most energy intensive sector in the UK, requiring large amounts of energy for pumping, water treatment and waste management. By consuming less water, thereby requires less energy, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and assisting in tackling climate change.
Such measures are clearly related to sustainability due to the world’s continued reliance on finite fossil fuel resources and increased pressure on water supplies, as well as potential threats from environmental change and an expanding population. The more we can do to protect these increasingly scarce resources, the better the future for our planet.