Addressing Climate Change in Your Transport Policy
Transportation is one of the single biggest contributors to carbon emissions in the world. Any serious attempt to cut carbon emissions must therefore address issues around transport – something that any business, however big or small, can do.
Transport, aside from aviation, accounts for 22% of all carbon emissions. Aviation accounts for around 5% of all UK carbon emissions on its own, with shipping accounting now for far more than was previously thought (at least 3% of worldwide carbon emissions).
With both of these sectors growing whilst other areas responsible for the reduction of carbon emissions are said to be stabilising or reducing emissions avoiding air and sea transport seems to be one of the first priorities.
Prioritise Your Transport NeedsWe all need to use transportation, the question is just how much we need. If a journey across town to pick up a parcel can be conducted on bicycle or on foot then go for this option where possible. If a journey can definitely be avoided then do so – combine tasks that necessitate going in the right direction if necessary.
Ultimately, the most carbon will be saved in avoiding a journey altogether and this is where you will have to decide on your priorities. Are all business trips abroad strictly necessary (especially where air travel is concerned)? Can conferences be conducted remotely over the internet or can decisions be simply ratified by e-mail rather than by airmail (this will depend partly on the culture of work in the country you are doing business with)?
Where possible encourage use of more carbon friendly fuels within your company. This may extend to the provision of carbon friendly company cars, vans and lorries for your fleet (see related article). The carbon trust can help with information regarding using more environmentally friendly fuels.