Businesses that book air travel for their staff can also do their bit, and make a big difference to reducing aviation emissions. Not only is this essential for addressing climate change, it is also an increasingly important reputational consideration. Since 2013, UK companies listed on the London Stock Exchange have been required to disclose their CO2 emissions.
Many businesses, especially those with overseas offices or clients, aren’t able to significantly cut down on flying. However, there are many ways to reduce or compensate for the emissions generated, including staying in more eco-friendly hotels.
Here are just a few of the ways organisations can ensure greener business travel:
CORPORATE OFFSETTING SCHEMES
Offsetting enables organisations to fly without increasing their overall carbon footprints and compensate for flight emissions due to business travel by financing a reduction in emissions elsewhere. This could be anything from investing in wind and solar projects to reforestation efforts.
There are lots of ways businesses can be net carbon zero in their corporate travel. Some airlines offset certain flights as standard, others allow organisations and individuals to voluntarily offset their own emissions (generally by paying an additional fee when buying the ticket). Even when an airline doesn’t offer its own scheme, there are lots of independent and approved carbon offsetting schemes available.
To make offsetting easier for businesses, there are also now many travel management companies that specialise in helping businesses lower the carbon emissions associated with their trips – including finding appropriate carbon offsetting schemes.
Emissions generated by business travel don’t begin and end with the flight. Changing behaviour when staff reach their destination can also make a big difference to the overall carbon footprint of a business trip. The hotel industry is fast becoming more environmentally friendly – employing everything from motion-sensing lighting, to rainwater-harvesting technology to reduce emissions.
While travelling to meet clients and colleagues can never be fully replaced by virtual meetings, modern technology makes it easier than ever to collaborate with people all around the world, without leaving the office.