20 Chapters
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Resource H: Vendor Questionnaire

Mager, David Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

What follows are general and specific questions to ask your vendors to qualify their environmental performance, which is subsidized by your purchasing dollars.

1. What is the minimum wage paid to employees? What is the minimum wage paid to contract employees who work within your facilities (e.g., cleaning contractors)? What is the minimum wage paid at your top ten vendors? What is the ratio of your highest salary to your lowest salary for a full-time employee?

2. What is the ethnodemographic breakdown of your employees? Of management? As it relates to the U.S. Census data for the region? Do you provide specific training to HR personnel and managers in managing diversity?

3. What is the percentage diversion of waste produced in your facility?

4. What percent of employees do not walk to work or use bicycles, car/van pools, or public transportation to get to work?

5. Is the majority of lighting employed in the offices energy efficient? Is your office equipment Energy Star rated?

6. Please send us your mission statement and list your top socially and environmentally responsible sustainability practices.

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Mager, David Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub
Medium 9781605094656

Resource D: Input/Output Mass Balance Analysis

Mager, David Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

As part of the input/output mass balance analysis (IOMBA), quantify each of the following input and output items:

Weight of incoming freight, including the weight of


Weight of incoming mail and packages

Weight of incoming office supplies

Weight of incoming water

Weight of items brought in by employees, customers,

and visitors that are left on-site

Weight of mail and product shipped to or carried off by

customers, including the weight of packaging

Weight of water leaving the facility

Weight of material leaving the facility for recycling

Weight of material leaving the facility for composting

Weight of material going to a proprietary wastewater

treatment facility

Weight of material leaving the facility for disposal,

including the weight of material leaving the company’s own wastewater treatment facility for disposal

Weight of total suspended solids (TSS), biological

oxygen demand (BOD), chemical oxygen demand (COD), and/or total oxygen demand (TOD) disposed of via the sewer to a municipal wastewater treatment facility

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8 Carbon Quantifying and Reducing Your Carbon Footprint

Mager, David Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

In the near future, enterprises of all sizes will need to consider and address their carbon footprints—the amount of carbon dioxide that they produce. This chapter provides a short explanation of the greenhouse warming effect and indicates how upcoming regulations are likely to affect corporations. Then you’ll learn how to determine what your carbon footprint is and how to reduce it cost-effectively.

The glass roof of a greenhouse allows visible light to travel through, where it is absorbed and becomes heat (infrared), but the glass does not transmit infrared heat, so the heat stays trapped in the greenhouse. Carbon dioxide and certain other gases in the earth’s atmosphere have a similar effect. They trap heat near the earth’s surface.

The gases that have been officially identified by the UN under the Kyoto Protocol as greenhouse gases are carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide, and certain fluorinated gases (CFCs) like Freon. Each molecule of methane traps 23 times as much heat as each molecule of carbon dioxide. Nitrous oxide traps 296 times as much. For CFCs, the numbers are even higher.

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2 Audits Measuring Where You Are

Mager, David Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

Whatever sustainability target you have set for yourself, in order to hit the bull’s-eye you have to know where you are standing in relation to your target. The process for assessing your current sustainability performance is called a sustainability audit. In a sustainability audit, you try to quantify your energy and material use and your emissions and releases to the environment. You also seek objective evidence to assess whether you are in compliance with regulations and any voluntary commitments that you have made vis-à-vis the environment or sustainability. A sustainability audit is your environmental report card.

Every line item in your profit (and loss) statement, cash flow statement, general ledger, and balance sheet has a corresponding environmental impact. The sustainability audit quantifies that impact. While a sustainability audit is a look backward, it is a crucial step in moving forward toward sustainability. To get where you are going, you have to know where you are. Creating a plan helps you find what additional key measures you need to assess. After the audit, you may discover items that should be included in your plan.

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