Shropshire Sustainability Expert Urges Service Industries to Join Carbon Reduction Efforts

Amidst the predominant focus on carbon reduction in manufacturing, a dedicated sustainability expert from Shropshire has emphasized the importance of service industries playing their part in the environmental cause.

Sue Burnell, founder of Shrewsbury-based Business Net Zero, highlighted that it’s not only energy-intensive manufacturers who can make strides in reducing carbon emissions and waste. She emphasized that every business, regardless of its size, has a role to play in minimizing its impact on the environment.

“While it may be evident how manufacturers, retailers, and the hospitality industry can curtail their energy usage and waste, it’s not always apparent how desk-based service businesses can effect change,” said Burnell.

“However, there is ample scope for improvement across the board. Do you really need to commute to an office every day, or can remote work be an option? Is it essential to travel by plane for that meeting, or can it be conducted online? Are you relying on wasteful coffee pods and disposable cups, or would a filter machine and reusable mugs suffice?”

Burnell emphasized that these examples are just the beginning, with countless areas where positive changes can be made. From enhancing office insulation and adopting energy-efficient lighting to reducing paper and ink consumption, small modifications can have a significant impact. Even a simple switch from individually washing cups and plates to utilizing an office dishwasher at the end of the day can save substantial amounts of hot water.

“Implementing small changes doesn’t have to come at a high cost, if any at all—and you’ll be astonished by how even minor adjustments can lead to long-term financial savings,” Burnell added.

Business Net Zero has been assisting numerous organizations across the county in identifying their largest carbon outputs and developing bespoke strategies for reduction. One such company is Telford-based quantity surveying firm CQS Solutions.

Following carbon literacy training with Burnell, five members of the CQS team have already made notable changes. Principal surveyor Tim Lloyd emphasized the importance of companies being forward-thinking and innovative, ensuring that their actions align with the responsibility to create a sustainable future.

Lloyd shared that the company’s plan revolves around travel, particularly commuting and site visits. Some company vehicles have been replaced with electric cars, and a policy has been implemented allowing employees to work from home two days a week if desired.

CQS is also actively advocating for sustainability initiatives with its serviced office landlord, seeking commitments on energy supply, waste management, and heating controls. Lloyd believes that influencing broader change is crucial for the company’s impact to extend beyond its immediate operations.

He recommended other businesses to partake in the carbon literacy course offered by Business Net Zero, highlighting the potential direct savings in energy, commuting, and fuel costs, as well as the indirect benefits of influencing customer and supplier behaviors.

To access environmental advice and training provided by Business Net Zero, please visit

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