The council can’t solve the challenge of reducing air pollution in Bristol on its own, everyone needs to play their part.
There are simple things businesses and organisations can do to reduce their pollution and help make Bristol a healthier place for everyone.
Enable employees to work from home some of the time
Since the start of the pandemic, many businesses have embraced homeworking. Allowing employees to work from home on a regular basis reduces the number of cars on the road. Homeworking also requires less energy to heat, cool, and light office buildings and power office equipment.
Encourage employees to walk, cycle or use public transport
When working from home is not possible, encourage your employees to travel to work more sustainably by walking, cycling or public transport.
It reduces the need for car parking spaces and the impact of traffic on the local community. By promoting active travel, you can demonstrate corporate social responsibility whilst improving staff wellbeing.
It’s a well-known fact that walking and cycling improves employee retention and motivation. Guidance from the National Institute of Health & Clinical Excellence recommends that moderate physical activity can reduce sick days by helping staff to achieve recommended weekly physical exercise levels.
Get free sustainable travel advice that benefits your staff and organisation
The Travelwest team are sustainable travel experts. They’re funded by the Department for Transport to increase the number of people walking, cycling, using public transport, and car-sharing.
They can help you reduce business travel time and costs, reduce your required car parking provision and the associated costs, increase staff morale and productivity and improve your environmental credentials.
Switch your fleet to electric vehicles
Electric cars and vans are cheaper to run, own and maintain than petrol or diesel vehicles. They are also subject to tax breaks and can be bought with sizeable government grants. You may be eligible for more than one type of grant.
Maintain your fleet to minimise emissions
Staying on top of your fleet’s maintenance is an easy way to reduce your emissions.
Under and over inflated tyres can increase fuel consumption and make them more susceptible to wear and tear.
Unaligned wheels can result in uneven wear, which weakens tyres and makes them more prone to damage. They can also reduce the driver’s control of the car and increase fuel consumption. When you’re having your vehicle looked over or having new tyres put on at a garage, make sure the alignment is checked and adjusted if needed.
Eliminating just 45kg of excess weight can increase fuel efficiency by up to 2%. Consider downsizing or leaving unnecessary items such as roof racks and toolboxes back at the depot.
Share information with your employees and networks to inspire further change
Internal awareness-raising campaigns and active championing by senior management and green champions or green teams are effective ways of encouraging change in the workplace.
Encouraging staff to develop their own ideas and take action is important to change their behaviour but also to inspire and prompt changes in other people’s behaviour.
Tell people if your company is doing something to help improve air quality or go green! People want to be proud of the company they work for, there can be a big impact on how staff behave through external recognition or publicity.