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Sustainability Helps SMEs Cut Costs, Increase Profitability

From Environmental Leader, Published 06 January 2014

​A quarter of small businesses say sustainability ranks high on their priority list for 2014 and a third expect to increase their investment in sustainable business practices over the next five years, according to research by Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking.

The Maidenhead Advertiser reports that the UK bank surveyed small- and medium-sized enterprises (SME) about their sustainability practices and found more than half of those surveyed saw cost benefits of implementing such practices.

It also found 87 percent of businesses that have implemented sustainable business practices say there are benefits to this such as reduced costs, increased profitability or positively affecting the environment.

Most business, however, say they focus on “traditional green activities” such as recycling and energy efficiency as opposed to broader areas such as sustainable supply chains and sourcing, according to the report.

US small businesses — which employ 60 million Americans, or about half of the workforce — are particularly at risk from extreme weather and climate change and must take steps to adapt, according to a July report from Small Business Majority (SBM) and the American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC).