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Envirowise has now become part of WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme)
In the current economic climate, cost savings are undoubtedly at the top of the agenda for businesses. One way that companies can achieve valuable cost reductions is by making environmental improvements. With businesses facing increasing scrutiny from environmentally-conscious customers and added pressure to meet environmental regulation, it is important for businesses to make environmental improvements now, and in doing so benefit from the associated cost savings.  
Sustainability experts Envirowise are working with businesses right across the UK to help them respond to this changing landscape and lower their environmental impact. The main objective of their work is to promote resource efficiency, which essentially means reducing, re-using and recycling waste materials wherever possible. Set up in 1994, Envirowise (and now WRAP) is a Government-funded programme that provides free advice and practical guidance to help businesses of all sizes and sectors boost resource efficiency and ultimately save money.

Waste costs money

For example, all the waste that a business produces has both a financial and environmental cost associated with it that is often underestimated. As part of a wider review of resource efficiency, be aware that waste costs money, as much as 4% of business turnover, and by finding ways to reduce waste, your company could become more profitable. Don’t forget that unwanted packaging, unused raw materials, demolition waste, and process water (such as that for cooling and washing equipment) are all potential areas for waste reduction. However, understanding where this waste has come from is crucial, as it forms the first step to planning how best to eliminate it at source, or reduce, re-use or recycle it. 
In the immediate term, businesses should consider putting in place simple recycling measures e.g. putting clearly labelled paper recycling bins next to each group of desks in the office, or smaller ones under desks. Kitchens and canteens should be equipped with glass, plastics and cardboard bins with distinctive labels, but efforts should not be restricted to recycling. Liaise with suppliers to encourage them to reduce the amount of packaging that equipment is delivered in and ask them to consider taking containers back to be refilled, rather than providing new ones each time. 

Water reduction

Water reduction is another area which offers great potential for improved resource efficiency. The short-term cost savings of reducing water use is a key driver for businesses to review their water consumption. Water is one of the few resources that companies pay for twice – once to receive it and again for disposal.
UK firms as a whole could see their costs cut by up to
£10m per day by using water more efficiently.

For up-to-the-minute information on how WRAP can help you reduce waste and recycle more visit the WRAP website at www.wrap.org.uk or call the helpline on 0808 100 2040

WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme)

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