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Sustainability – 12 easy things you can do

March 31, 2016

Sustainability in the environmental sense is the support of long term ecological balance and the discouragement of actions that are harmful to the environment. In the business sense Sustainability is a catch all word that describes and encourages corporate social responsibility.

This is not a new area, but the involvement of accountants to develop metrics and measure and analyze performance is fairly new. Recently I have become involved in these efforts through the NYS Society of CPAs and its new Sustainability Committee and am the chairman of its Education Sub-Committee. This blog is the start of some descriptions that will periodically be posted.

Before there can be a discussion of how accountants can contribute to this new and exciting field I think it is necessary to provide a sense of the overall topic. For starters here is a list of 12 little effort no cost things you can do that will contribute to “saving the planet” and conserve natural resources.

  1. Do not keep water running when you brush your teeth
  2. Lower your thermostat a couple of degrees in the winter and raise it in the summer
  3. On mild days in the Spring and Fall turn off your air conditioner and open your windows
  4. Add a few extra plants to your house and office
  5. Recycle as much as possible – Look for the blue receptacles
  6. If given a choice, buy from “green” companies
  7. Try to purchase more natural foods and those without artificial flavoring and preservatives
  8. Print fewer emails and reports that can easily be viewed on your screen
  9. Use your public library to borrow books (including downloads) and to read current issues of magazines instead of buying the books and subscribing to the magazines
  10. Turn off lights when leaving a room
  11. Reduce your shower time by two minutes
  12. Use larger loads in your dishwasher and washing machine

Try some of the above – none will hurt and they might help!

P.S. For more information, the NYS Society of CPAs will be presenting a Sustainability Investment Leadership Conference on May 6. Here is a link for info: http://silcny.com/event/2016-silc-conference/

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