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Being ‘green’ – a quality seal of approval to enhance your business and prosperity

If you have taken to reading this FTJ column regularly you will know that the main thread has been to document the journey to Carbon Net Zero that the #MidasGreenInitiative summarises and to showcase how essentially ‘easy’ it is to dramatically reduce a business’s carbon footprint whilst simultaneously reducing costs and therefore increasing profits. I hope that this inextricable link has been made as clear as possible over the months, after all if you choose to burn less fossil fuel, as a result of your energy reduction initiatives, it stands to reason your bills will reduce, that’s obvious, isn’t it? Surely the same applies if you invest in LED lights, a high efficiency compressor, seal leaks in your airlines, reduce the amount of gas you burn, put motion sensors on your lights, or simply purchase lower cost ‘green’ electricity, of course it does, it’s just that at Midas we’ve gone much further and have chosen to take our impact on the Earth as seriously as we possibly can.

You will know from previous issues of Foundry Trade Journal that we chose to eliminate single use plastics from our factories as quickly as we could. We immediately saw we could replace plastic bubble wrap with paper, shredded cardboard and paper bubble, the result was instant – much cheaper packing materials, a total elimination of plastic packaging and of course an undeniable level of responsibility being shown to our customers. Of course, some customers needed to understand why the change had happened, but once explained they could see that these changes were not only environmentally responsible but totally necessary if we were to live up to our climate change ideals, that brought us business kudos and respect. This is undeniable, our customers want to be seen to be working with suppliers who can demonstrate ethical manufacturing that is auditable, not ‘greenwash’, and as a result of our Carbon Trust certificated PAS 2060 Carbon Neutral accreditation we can do that.

Where I am going with this is straightforward, I feel very strongly that when you embark on a carbon mitigation plan for your business you will see benefits that go way beyond your carbon footprint reduction – you save money, you increase your profits, but you also start a chain reaction that has such a positive impact on your business that you are left wondering why it took you so long to act.

Carbon mitigation is a PR manager’s dream, for every auditable step of improvement you make you can tell your suppliers and customers what you are doing and why your business is ahead of the curve, you can share your progress and subsequently inspire others to improve their businesses, they’ll thank you for that and you will feel the kudos. The same thing applies to your staff. It’s imperative in a world where children are being taught about climate change and carbon mitigation that they can come home from school and discuss their thoughts. Invariably they will ask about your job and your business and ask what your employer is doing. How important to you is it that you can say: “yes, my employer has done everything they possibly can to become carbon neutral or carbon net zero?” Putting your positive carbon reduction stories out as marketing or staff encouragement can only help your business become more stable and more successful.

Proof of this was driven home to me very recently. As previously revealed the #MidasGreenInitiative began on Thursday 18th April 2019, since then we’ve won awards, been certified carbon neutral by the Carbon Trust and achieved Carbon Net Zero by way of our partnership with the Forest of Marston Vale, but the one thing we were lacking was the environmental accreditation, ISO 14001:2015. During a conversation with our quality consultants, I expressed my concern that it was frustrating that achieving ISO 14001 was so difficult, I was abruptly told that it wasn’t! It turns out that all the work we had done to achieve PAS 2060 Carbon Neutrality was essentially the lion’s share of the work needed to prepare for ISO 14001. That conversation took place in April 2021, by August 2021 we had been awarded our ISO 14001 certification! I couldn’t have been prouder; our business had not only achieved carbon neutrality in less than two years but we had also gained the additional recognition of another internationally recognised environmental standard. Once again, we can remind our customers, suppliers and staff of our ethos and our genuinely ‘green’ motives as we try to inspire others to #ActNow.

At a time when the science is solid and clear, humanity has only a few years to address the issue of climate change. If we don’t all act we will face temperature increases that will bring unimaginable hardship onto many millions of people. On the other hand, if every responsible person does everything they possibly can, now, we can not only change the fate of mankind, our planet and its wonderful flora and fauna, but we can improve our own quality of life and our own economic prosperity. Whatever your thoughts and beliefs on climate change, why wouldn’t you want to enhance your business and make it more stable and more profitable simply by resolving your carbon footprint?

Alan Rance MICME Midas Pattern Company Ltd