Car pooling, mass transit, walking, bicycling; all of these are suggested forms of alternative transportation, especially in metropolis areas. If you live a few miles from home and decide on cycling or walking to work then hopefully, your employer has a shower for use, particularly in hot weather areas. If not, then carrying a pack for personal toiletries will have to do.
Many large companies are beginning to offer incentives to their employees for finding alternative forms of transportation, but let’s face it, only a very small percentage of them do. What about the other percentage of business? Small business in America is the largest employer. So how does small business adopt or encourage alternative transportation to their employees without losing more profit? Small business owners usually require dependable transportation when hiring new help. Most of the time employees earn just enough money to pay living expenses. Yet, the sustainability or green efforts are asking them to cut green house gas emissions (CO2) as one form of lightening their environmental footprint.
Environmental business exhaustion comes from wanting to do what’s right, but seemingly can’t. Small business owners have become exhausted in feeling like they can’t and the same with their employees. The environment is one more item to add on the list of responsibilities in addition to taxes, insurance, etc., so it’s put at the bottom and dealt with when the company reaches the proposed billion dollar mark of Phase 115 in the business plan.
Many small businesses hire personnel for delivery or on an “on-call” status making alternative transportation an unconceivable option. Single parents may need to leave in order to make the day-care deadline to pick up a child or a sales person may need to begin an appointment at sun-up to finally make their last stop at sun-down. Small business is unique in how it needs to run in order to become successful and stay there; therefore, needing a unique environmental sustainable plan.
One answer in helping small business do what’s right is to adopt a large business. Put together an environmental plan for your business and take it to large business and propose for their help. Ask what types of alternative transportation plans they encourage for employees along with other environmental programs that may benefit your type of business.
If no large industry is in the area, connect with the community. In an article at www.motherearthnews.com, under alternative transportation an author wrote of an elderly person giving a ride to a single mom neighbor since they were going in the same direction. The same can happen in your community.
There are ways to gain sustainability in the workplace as well as living place, we just have to brainstorm and build together.