Sustainability in business

Create efficiencies and reduce your environmental footprint

Sustainability has become increasingly important in business and it’s not just because of the environmental impacts: It can also increase operational efficiencies, improve consumer attractiveness, and consolidate business relationships. The following information and resources will help guide you in improving business sustainability and energy use.

What to find

Waste management

Steps to better manage waste in your business

  1. Measure your waste: record how much waste goes into your bin over a period of time.
  1. Reduce waste going to landfill: Determine which of your waste streams could be reduced, reused, or recycled.
  1. Identify local recyclers: Find local recyclers that accept your different waste streams. Check out this recycling directory.
  1. Understand your recycler and waste arrangements: Consider your current arrangements with your waste and recycling service provider and how this might impact your transition to better waste management.
  1. Introduce new waste collection methods: It’s now time to introduce new methods that will ensure that your waste is being disposed of correctly.

Learn more about steps to better waste management here.

Trade your waste

ASPIRE is a free online circular economy tool for organisations on the Sunshine Coast with an ABN and up to 100 staff. The tool uses smart algorithmic matching to facilitate trading, exchanging or selling of unwanted waste streams. Businesses that use ASPIRE can save money on disposal costs, reduce their carbon footprint and capture data related to their carbon emissions savings.

Find out more about ASPIRE here.

Textile recovery and recycling

Upparel is a textile recovery service that collects unwanted textiles from individuals and businesses to sort for re-distribution in second-hand stores or recycled into other resources. This can be used as a sustainable option for discarding unwanted stock, uniforms, offcuts and more. 

Find out more about Upparel here.  

Energy management

Businesses can start to improve energy efficiency in the workplace by making small changes with little to no cost. Further financial investment in altering and improving equipment can be made for long-term improvement in efficiency and cost.

Learn how to save energy in the following areas here:

  • Office equipment.
  • Lighting.
  • Heating, ventilation and air conditioning.
  • Refrigeration.
  • Compressed air.
  • Process cooling and refrigeration systems.
  • Solar power system.

Understand renewable energy options for your business

Business Renewables Centre Australia has developed a diagnostic tool to help your business understand renewable energy options. Answer three questions to learn more information on the renewable energy options suited for your business.

Find out more here.

Accredited retail renewable energy

GreenPower is a government-managed program that lets businesses support renewable energy generation. Buying GreenPower from an electricity retailer ensures that your energy is sourced from government accredited renewable energy sources. Speak to your energy retailer to learn if GreenPower is an option and the cost involved.

Find out more here.

Visit this website to learn more about:

  • energy management for business
  • industry sector guidelines
  • equipment and technology guides
  • energy efficiency skills and training
  • industrial energy tools
  • case studies
  • grants and funding
  • business support programs and advice
  • your rights as an energy customer.

Energy and gas comparison tool

WATTever provides impartial comparisons on energy and gas prices to help your business choose a contract that can save money and reduce emissions. Find resources that give guidance on purchasing not just energy contracts but also batteries, solar panels, heating and cooling, lighting and more.

Find out more here.

Event energy usage calculator

GreenPower’s event calculator helps estimate your event’s energy use by calculating the energy demands. The calculator then provides you with estimated carbon savings if GreenPower is to be purchased.

Find out more here.

The Green Electricity Guide

The Green Electricity Guide is a Greenpeace developed platform that rates energy retailers based on their support for renewable energy and reliance on fossil fuels. Use the guide to learn which energy retailers align with your business and follow their instructions to learn how to switch.

Find out more here.

Water management

Managing water usage ensures that you maximise your water use, and associated costs are mitigated. Efficient water use also reduces the electricity and/or gas used to heat hot water.

Unitywater provides water supply and sewage treatment services to the Sunshine Coast region. They have provided water management information that will help your business stay on top of its water use. Find information on:

Business Queensland has provided simple ways businesses can reduce water usage. has listed steps to manage water usages in your business.

  1. Monitor your water usage and create a benchmark: Identify your regular usage over a set time period to compare your subsequent usage. This helps you assess your overall usage and where efficiencies can be made.
  2. Identify leaks: Use your benchmark to identify abnormalities in your water usage.
  3. Use water effectively: Consider introducing new water saving measures and devices.
  4. Check state water rules: Industry requirements for water standards vary depending on your location – become familiar with your local rules and regulations.
  5. Find support: Upgrade your water systems through available grants and assistance.

Expert business sustainability support

ecoBiz is a free program aimed at small to medium sized businesses to help improve water, energy and waste efficiencies and savings. An expert will help you develop an action plan that can be implemented into your business to make your operation more sustainable.

Find out more here. 

Sunshine Coast Biosphere

The Sunshine Coast has been recognised as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve which gives the region recognition as an area of natural beauty where people live and work. As a biosphere, the Sunshine Coast is active in conservation while responsibly developing and living sustainably.

The Sunshine Coast Biosphere is one of five in Australia, joining a global network of
more than 700 reserves in over 130 countries.

Sunshine Coast Biosphere logo

What are the benefits of being a biosphere?

  • Economy and business: The Biosphere will attract more investment to our region and help local business grow by creation of niche markets for our region’s products and services, facilities and practices.
  • Agriculture, forestry and fisheries: It provides a premium brand to increase the value of products and services through a sustainable ‘Produced on the Sunshine Coast’ brand. It also protects these industries as an important part of our economy.
  • Development and construction: Achieves planning principles for urban consolidation and sustainable design to deliver inclusive and vibrant communities.
  • Partnerships: Increases collaboration between schools, academia, business and government with focus on sustainability projects.
  • Tourism: Raises the profile of the Sunshine Coast and increases the desirability of our region as a holiday destination.

What can businesses do?

Information will soon be released on how businesses can align themselves with the biosphere. Biosphere credentials will be a proud badge for businesses that will show customers and suppliers they are working sustainably in our environment.

Keep updated on the biosphere here.

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