Get Your Company a Green Edge

Going green is not just a matter of reducing your carbon footprint and saving on resources but also a smarter, efficient and often cost effective way of doing business. With Nepali companies starting to apply this knowledge in their efforts, its important to understand it well.

One impulse from a vernal wood may teach you more of man, of moral evil and of good, than all the sages can” – William Wordsworth.

For years Nepal’s natural resources have been exploited and will continue to be if we take assets provided to us by nature for granted like allowing the heavy rains that the monsoon brings to flow down the drains, instead of overcoming the shortage of water in the country via rain water harvesting. Nepal is enriched with an abundance of assets like forests, wind, rain, solar energy, hydropower, etc. which can be exploited to our use without damage to the environment and getting the better of problems like electricity, fuel and water shortages that impede our way to success.

However, saving the environment is not the only reason organizations are advised to go green. Green enterprising is about endeavoring to meet the triple bottom line (TBL), which stands for “the three pillars”, i.e., not just people and the planet but also profits. The good news is that you do not have to be a philanthropist or an environmentalist to adapt green methods into your business model. You can land both your organization and the environment at a win-win situation by going green. However, running a green business is about being environmentally conscious and thus “having no negative impact on the global or local environment, community, society, or economy”.

Several organizations in Nepal have already been making diligent efforts to adapt green methods into their businesses. Jamarko is an example of a cottage industry that has taken the ‘Go Green’ slogan seriously, by producing handmade recycled paper and similar products for its customers. They strive towards conserving the national resources; bringing to attention the importance of recycling in general.

One can decide to go green not just by producing green products but also by making customers apply the same principle in their daily lives. Case in point: the Namo Buddha Resort, started by Ingrid Schneider. Ingrid believes in serving her customers pure organic food, which is grown in her own resort gardens, and at the same time she adheres to other green practices like implementing grey water cleaning system at the resort. While these practices make minimal use of natural resources like water and soil providing maximum benefit in terms of outcome, they also prove to be financially profitable.

Going back to the three pillars, what organizations need to realize is that going green is great for business. In the process of helping people and the planet, they also minimize expenses to and increase profits. With such acute power cuts in the country, the petrol pump at Maitidevi is an excellent example of how the free and natural solar energy can be utilized to get away from the much dreaded diesel expenses on generators. This at a minimal one time investment required for the set up setting up of solar panels. Many other houses and corporations offices in the city are ‘going green’ via this method too;, what are you waiting for?

In the past few years, organizations all over the world have started to become environmentally conscious. While companies are trying to reduce their carbon footprints and consumers are demanding cleaner and greener products, “green” is also the new marketing mantra. Based on the Roper Survey conducted in 2002, it was found that in the US alone, 46% of consumers tend to recycle newspapers and 23% are inclined to buy products made from recycled materials.

‘Going green’ is not just something that not corporations can do. While we as consumers often complain about the ‘pollution emitted via industries, we must also take responsibility for enforcing the act of going green. Consumers must demand for products that have minimal harm to the environment. Organizations can also consider implementing green enterprising as a part of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

Deewaker Piya, Founder of Green n Green, talks about his initiative of going green and at the same time establishing an enterprise while doing so. “We try to keep the larger picture in mind i.e., our environment. Like they say, good planets are hard to find. So don’t blow it already.” Deewaker and his father launched a product called the Electronic Catalytic Convertor in their Chorofuel division, which helps generators and vehicles save on fuel usage, while reducing carbon emissions from their exhaust pipes. “It was a huge challenge to change the mindset of vehicle users, even though our products help save at least 5% – 15% of their fuel costs,” he says. As an upcoming entrepreneur, Deewaker had to do the rounds at several government offices while attempting to seek a harmonic code for such a product. His belief in going green is still strong: “Going green is always profitable in the long run. Earning goodwill for your organization in the community is only a complimentary benefit.”

Now the question is, do we act now or do we wait for our wells to dry out before we realize the worth of water. As Gary Snyder said, “Nature is not a place to visit. It is home.”

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