The Downtown Surrey Business Improvement Association (DSBIA) recognizes that, as sustainability has grown in importance within the City of Surrey and the Lower Mainland as a whole, there are many opportunities for business to get involved in initiatives and work towards greater sustainability.
It’s not about being perfectly sustainable tomorrow – it’s about making more sustainable choices more often. Putting sustainability on your to do list can help you save money on your energy, water and waste bills as well as help you attract the growing number of consumers that would rather buy sustainable products and services.
How can you get started? Assess where you are at and set goals for the future. For example, if you want to tackle energy use, first you should measure your current energy usage and set a goal for reduction (ex: 10% reduction over the following year).
See the list below for a sample of the many tips and resources available to businesses. Pick one…get started today!
- Upgrade to energy efficient technology and save money on your energy bill! (lights, refrigerators, stoves etc.
- Get a rebate from BC Hydro’s Product Incentive Program www.bchydro.com/incentives or 1 866 522 4731 Example: BC Hydro offers a $55 incentive for businesses to upgrade from a Incandescent Exit Sign to a LED Exit Sign
- Turn off appliances when not in use
- Plug everything into a switchable power bar and switch off at night
- Improve the insulation of your building – ex caulk / weather strip windows and doors
- Check out more tips: Power Smart Tips for saving energy in your business
- Restaurants, check out Restaurant Energy Saving Tips (Washington State University Extension Energy Program) http://www.energyideas.org/documents/factsheets/03_022_Rest_Tips_fct.pdf
- Default your printer to double sided printing
- Buy products with less packaging
- Buy recycled materials – ex paper products: recycled printing paper, napkins, toilet paper
- Consider recycling non refundable plastics and metal
- Restaurants: be sure to recycle your oil
- Free oil pick up – Earthworks Canada http://earthworkscanada.com/bc/
- Restaurants: offer optional smaller portions on your menu, provide incentives for people to bring their own take out containers
- Check out other waste reduction tips at: Quick Tips: Waste Prevention Ideas That Save You $$$ http://www.calrecycle.ca.gov/ReduceWaste/Business/QuickTip.htm
- Restaurants also check out: Food for thought – Waste reduction in the Restaurant Industry (Greater Vancouver Regional District) http://www.p2pays.org/ref/03/02905.pdf
- Upgrade to water efficient appliances
- Use water efficient taps and replace aerators
- Check for and repair leaks. For toilets put blue food colouring in toilet tank and if the bowl turns blue you have a water leak.
- Put a toilet bladder into toilet tank. You can buy toilet bladders that displace water in your toilet tank so that less water is used per flush. A jar of water, or a brick work as well
- Soak dishes and utensils rather than using running water
- Only run dishwasher when it is full
- Restaurants, check out more tips at:
Water Efficiency Checklist for Restaurants (City of Tampa, Florida website) http://www.tampagov.net/dept_Water/information_resources/Efficiency_checklists/restaurant_water_efficiency_checklist.asp
- Check out more tips at Business.Gov (US website) http://www.business.gov/manage/green-business/energy-efficiency/energy-saving/water-conservation.html
- Get Local BC
- For restaurants try buying from: Two Ee’s Farm http://foodpages.ca/TwoEesFarm , or Heppell’s Potato Corp http://www.heppells.ca/
- Metro Vancouver’s Business Guide to Eco-efficiency: 10 Strategies to Maximizing Efficiency, Improving Profits and Competitiveness http://www.metrovancouver.org/about/publications/Publications/TenStrategies1.pdf
- Metro Vancouver’s Sustainable Purchasing Guide http://www.metrovancouver.org/about/publications/Publications/SustainablePurchasing1.pdf