Environmental sustainability initiatives are a great way to help preserve clean air, water and wildlife for future generations. Whether it’s forming targeted employee green teams, reducing harmful materials or modifying product packaging, many companies can make the switch to sustainability.
Mother Earth is made of four elements: earth, air, fire and water. Environmental health and safety professionals must keep these fundamentals in mind while adhering to EPA regulations and improving management and risk reduction.
Wind power is considered one of the most environmentally sustainable energy options. However, it does have a few ecological limitations. One of the most significant is that wind farms require large areas of land. This could affect animals that graze or nest on the land, as well as the surrounding area’s biodiversity.
Another environmental limitation is that turbines can create surface-level and atmospheric pollution. This is due to the fact that they are non-biodegradable and generate MSW (municipal solid waste) at the end of their lifespan. Additionally, blades are highly polluting when transported. Engineers are working to minimize these impacts by designing a new model of turbine.
They are developing shorter blades, which reduces interference with migration patterns and helps preserve biodiversity. Additionally, they are constructing mass battery centers to store excess energy. This will maximize efficiency rates and minimize power loss. These facilities also help to reduce electricity prices. This helps achieve the SDGs in areas like clean water and sanitation, affordable and clean energy, decent work and economic growth, and more.
Sunlight is a powerful resource that can be used to achieve many sustainability goals. This includes energy production, as well as heating and cooling. Companies can use solar panels, install windows with high heat-retention properties, and design workspaces that maximize natural sunlight.
This initiative focuses on changing business practices to conserve resources. For example, it may include implementing home-based working policies, video calls to minimize travel, reducing paper usage or installing automated light switches. It can also involve promoting responsible consumption, such as avoiding waste by using reusable or recycled materials.
For instance, Rothy’s uses recycled plastic bottles to create shoes, bags and face coverings. The company’s website explains how the bottles are sliced, pressurized into pellets, and spun into thread to be knitted into the products. This is a great example of a sustainable practice that also saves the company money. This savings is often a big incentive for businesses to adopt sustainability initiatives.
In contrast to the fossil fuels used to power traditional combustible engines, biofuels are renewable energy sources. They can be produced from plant biomass or waste material, and used as a replacement for traditional petrol or diesel in combustion engine vehicles. They emit fewer greenhouse gases when burnt than fossil fuels, and can also be blended with regular fuels to reduce emissions.
Some of the most popular liquid transportation biofuels are ethanol and biodiesel, which can be produced from corn, soybeans, sugarcane, vegetable oils and animal fats. Biofuels can also be produced from nonfood materials, known as cellulosic biofuels, but these are less prevalent.
In terms of environmental sustainability, biofuels should only receive policy support if they deliver substantial life cycle GHG reductions and can offset conventional pollutant emissions and pressure on exhaustible resources. Rigorous sustainability governance is needed to ensure that higher biofuel consumption delivers these benefits.
The heat energy stored in the earth’s crust is used to produce steam for electricity. This power source does not rely on the weather and can be tapped in locations around the world. It produces minimal greenhouse gases and is environmentally friendly.
The geothermal energy produced is also stable and reliable, allowing communities to reduce dependence on fossil fuels. This technology can be used to create small scale power plants in remote locations, such as schools and churches.
The United States has a lot of potential to develop more geothermal power. A recent study found that hot dry rock resources could be developed and coproduced at oil fields to generate 44,000 MW of electricity in the country. Kenya, meanwhile, has a number of potential geothermal sites along the famous East African Rift Valley and ranks eighth worldwide in terms of geothermal energy production. The country’s Vision 2030 economic blueprint calls for the exploitation of renewable energy to reduce reliance on imported fossil fuels and increase access to electricity.