Help make ours the greenest city

Nyree AmbarchianNyree Ambarchian provides some simple suggestions to help your business save energy and money

DID you know that office lights left on overnight use enough energy in a year to heat a home for almost five months? Or that a 2°C increase in office temperature creates enough CO2 in a year to fill a hot air balloon?

Many organisations in Peterborough are already taking steps to reduce their carbon footprint. Here are some simple steps you can take which will make a real impact on the environment and your bottom line.

What’s your carbon footprint? Calculating your carbon footprint can be a tedious task requiring information about your electricity usage and employee travel. But you need to establish your baseline output so you can set goals for improvements and measure success. The Carbon Trust has a good carbon calculator. To give it a try, click here.

Look for the potential in your rubbish. Eastex is the materials exchange scheme for the East of England. Through the website users can list materials they would like to re-home, whilst others list items they are looking for. The scheme is based on the idea that one business’s waste is another’s raw material. If you need to get rid of office furniture, old computers or even a ton of potpourri, Eastex can help. Since its set up three years ago, Eastex has saved local firms over £1.5 million in waste disposal and procurement costs and diverted 10,000 tonnes of goods from landfill.

Ask for help. If you are struggling to kick-start your environmental management you might want to seek outside help. Peterborough has a wealth of support available for city firms wanting to go green (some of which is free). Business Envestors is a good place to start.

Reduce what you’re using. Walk round your office and assess any areas you could use less. Could you print double-sided? Are people leaving the tap in the sink on? Do you turn all office lights off at the end of the day? Has someone left a phone charger plugged in while they’re not using it? Do you turn off the photocopier at the end of the day? Do you turn your computer monitor off when you leave your desk?

Raise awareness. Senior management buy-in to any environmental management plan is essential for success. It’s also vital to tell staff what you’re doing, why you’re doing it and what the tangible benefits are. You can download free posters to stick up in your office by visiting

For more tips on going green and other environmental initiatives in Peterborough, visit Peterborough Environment City Trust is the local charity leading the city’s ambition to become the UK’s Environment Capital.