“Have you ever wondered about the role of businesses in the face of escalating climate change”, says Ben Bulger, Director at Oxygen House Ltd in a guest blog.
The urgency for transformation has never been greater. With record-breaking temperatures and increasingly frequent and intense natural disasters, it’s clear that we cannot avoid the effects of climate change. In this context, businesses play a crucial role as agents of change. But the question remains: how can they truly adapt to these challenges? By applying creativity and curiosity in business, we can find some of the answers.
With the sole aim to tackle the challenges of climate change and biodiversity loss, Oxygen House Ltd (Part of the Oxygen House Group) are a pioneering force, offering innovative professional and operational services to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon, climate-resilient future.
Practical Solutions and Small Interventions
Practical solutions like water conservation, energy efficiency, and supply chain analysis are crucial for sustainability, but they represent only one aspect of the necessary transformation. These solutions can provide co-benefits that contribute to profitability, but small interventions that cost little to nothing can also lead to significant changes. Simple actions such as amending a policy or adding a “green” clause to contracts can be easy wins. These actions can help businesses adapt and thrive in a changing climate without requiring substantial resources.
The Need for a Fundamental Shift
Yet for businesses to truly adapt to the challenges posed by climate change, a fundamental shift in culture and operational thinking is required. A holistic approach is essential. Companies must integrate sustainability into the core of their operations, not merely as a department, consultant, or afterthought.
Stakeholder involvement is key. By acknowledging that we are all part of a much larger ecosystem and involving customers, suppliers, and employees, we can understand their ambitions or limitations. Here, we must balance pace and patience. There are many constraints on large and small businesses where knowledge and funding are challenging, but this should not slow the desire for change.
The two most important adaptations are the systems and policies that govern us and the people that implement them. Progressive initiatives in human resources, like our Keeling Culture are essential. Our global initiative aims to foster organisational cultural adaptations to combat climate change.
Frameworks and Policy
Internal policies and governance structures must align with sustainability goals. This includes embedding green goals into procurement, contracts, and benefits, setting clear targets, measuring performance, and holding ourselves accountable.
Pioneering projects such as The Chancery Lane Project support the organisational shift required. They are reimagining legal contracts and systems to support ecological and climate objectives.
Transparency and Communication
At Oxygen House we aim to be transparent in our sustainability efforts and openly communicate both our successes and our failures. Nobody is perfect, and we must build trust among stakeholders to facilitate collective learning and improvement.
In conclusion, true adaptation to the challenges posed by climate change requires a holistic and integrated approach to sustainability. It is not just about implementing practical solutions, but also about shifting our culture, mindset, policies, and operations. In an increasingly resource-constrained world, sustainability is not just a responsibility – it is a necessity for long-term success.
Now, it’s your turn to act. What steps will your business take towards sustainability and adaptation to climate change? The Met Office #GetClimateReady campaign helps people understand how making even the smallest changes plays a part in adapting our lives to protect ourselves from the climate impacts we will see. Let’s learn from each other and work together for a sustainable future.