One of the easiest ways to reduce furniture waste - and the associated carbon emissions - is simply to buy well and look after the furniture items you already have. So you’re aiming for better furniture which will be in use for longer.
My Mum used to tell me years ago to buy a good coat (pair of shoes or briefcase) as it would last ‘forever’. The message being to invest in quality for long-term value. It turns out she was right after all!
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report that was released on 4th April made grim reading. The report’s authors highlighted that we are actually moving further away from achieving the average 1.5 degree Celsius target agreed by the Paris Climate Change Agreement. Worrying we are falling drastically short, with dramatic and devastating consequences for our planet. As the United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has given a stark warning: “We are on a fast track to climate disaster: Major cities under water. Unprecedented heat waves. Terrifying storms. Widespread water shortages. The extinction of a million species of plants and animals.”
Everyone needs to play their part
You may be tempted to think that Climate Change is an issue for large companies and governments and that SMEs have no part to play. But think again.
At the beginning of 2021 there were over 5.5million SMEs in the UK. SMEs account for three-fifths of UK jobs and around half of the turnover in the private sector. If all SMEs measured their carbon-footprint, introduced reduction targets and offset their carbon, imagine the massive shift in the UK's carbon footprint #yeswecan.
Between us we can make a huge difference by simply reducing waste of every type – time, effort, energy, furniture – everything, it all counts. This will, in turn, reduce landfill and all those nasties that go with it that we don’t like to think about - ground, air and water pollution, the decrease in local mammal and wildlife population, increases in vermin, increased potential for disease and noxious fumes, to name just a few. Landfill is like tidying your bedroom by shoving everything under the bed – even though it’s temporarily out of sight, it’s still there and still a problem that will need to be addressed at some point.
Reducing waste is a good place to start as that automatically reduces carbon from the unnecessary purchase of new items – especially furniture. Reducing and ideally eliminating furniture landfill will help the environment and also reduce carbon – it’s a win-win situation.
Second life office furniture
If your organisation is thinking of refurbishing, why not consider repairing, refreshing, reworking or reconfiguring the items you already have in place. Not only will it save you a lot of money, your second life furniture can be used as an organisational badge of pride - as part of your CSR policy, you can shout about it, using social media to show how much carbon and landfill you’ve saved – well worth applauding.
JPA provides a range of circular furniture solutions in addition to award winning community furniture rehoming and materials recycling programmes. All aimed at reducing the carbon cost of furniture related projects. To date, our circular services have saved our clients well over £2m in new furniture spend, with over 27,000 unwanted furniture items diverted from landfill, which is around 857 tonnes co2e.
It doesn’t sound like exciting in the scheme of things, but by simply reducing waste, you and your organisation are contributing actively and positively to NetZero and helping to save our planet. As a family business, we want to leave a positive legacy from our activity and I truly believe that we can ALL make a difference by reducing waste in order to reduce waste. #yeswecan
Contact us for a free quote and give your office furniture a second life as you join us in lowering carbon footprint and introducing more CSR policies to can shout about.