“Go carbon neutral”; “help the environment”; “supercharge your corporate social responsibility (CSR)”; “be green” – organisations and businesses the world over are being encouraged to act, demonstrating their commitment to being more consciously aware of the impact they have on the world we live in.
It’s great news for the environment itself, biodiversity and the myriad positive impacts on wildlife, plant life and indeed, vicariously, human health – but it’s also good for public relations, customer satisfaction and building trust with stakeholders and of your brand.
But how do brands look to demonstrate their commitment to CSR, carbon offsetting or environmental impact? Despite all the talk about being carbon neutral and ‘green credits’, it can be daunting, especially for smaller brands and SMEs, to know what to do and where to turn. The gold standard is to be carbon neutral but the reality is, however, that it can be difficult, if not impossible, for organisations to reduce carbon emission to zero – which is where carbon offsets come in. You might have heard of “The Paris Agreement”; an agreement within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which is dealing with greenhouse gas emissions mitigation, adaptation, and finance. Due to start in 2020, it’s a formal international agreement designed to provide a common goal in reducing the negative impact industrial and non-green conscious activities are having on global warming and the global environment overall. There’s a lot of very complicated information about this and the whole ‘green agenda’ but, for example our purpose-built wooden barn at the farm is made from and clad in sustainable wood and the living green roof covered in sedum, a source of pollen for our honeybees and any other pollen actors that care to feast on it! It’s just one of the many examples offered of ways in which businesses can consider the environment: consider the consequence of the action you’re about to take and explore if there’s an environmentally-friendly alternative. Adopting a beehive is a great example of an innovative and efficacious solution for offsetting carbon emissions and gaining credits for an application to reduce your carbon footprint, by demonstrating a positive action on biodiversity and environmental impact.
We established ‘Project 25o’ in 2018, which commits to installing 250 new honeybee hives across Britain over the next 5 years (we installed 23 from April to September 2018), whilst simultaneously sowing 250 acres of bare or unused land with organic, bee-friendly flower seeds. For every beehive we adopt, packets of those seeds are provided for our clients to sow locally, too.
For some organisations, it’s about starting with things closer to their work environment, and directly involving either the building they work in, or spaces of interest. Following consultation with existing clients and those in the tourism and hospitality sector, who manage transient interactive tins with their buildings or brand, we launched Beehive Twinning (www.beehivetwinning.co.uk), as a cost-effective solution to twinning a space such as a reception area or meeting room, for example; an entire building or the whole brand, with a working honeybee hive. A framed certificate can be displayed and the activity provides interesting collateral for PR and engagement stories.
We are proud recipients of the Green Tourism gold award for our efforts to reduce waste, become self-sustainable as a site, recycle, use home grown, organic and locally sourced produce and to continually strive to farm organically, ethically and sustainably. It is a real joy and a genuine pleasure to be able to offer natural solutions for other organisations wanting to demonstrate the same, whilst helping to reverse the decline of the critical honeybee.
Bees for Business provide honeybee hives for adoption to help organisations offset their carbon footprint and demonstrate a positive and real commitment to the environment – all whilst supporting British farming and British honey. Watch the video and download your Free Guide to Honeybee Adoption at www.beesforbusiness.com