Earth Day may be on April 22, but for many small businesses in Burnaby Heights, every day is Earth Day. We want to celebrate those sustainable businesses that are giving a green fig about the environment!
From April 22 until the end of June, we will be featuring Heights businesses through social media conversations to lift up those that are trying hard to support a healthier planet.
Follow along over the next two months as we share features, small stories, and tidbits about local neighbourhood businesses whose sustainable business practices are helping them become leaders in their own fields.
To celebrate the beginning of the Green Business Spotlight, here are some quick tips to help you become a sustainable-shopping superstar!
Rethink Your Usual Shopping Habits
Many small local businesses are often located in neighbourhoods and local shopping districts like Burnaby Heights, which in turn, result in more closer-to-home shopping habits. This, in turn, generates more successful businesses that can employ more people closer to where people live, so they don’t have to commute long distances. The result? Lower carbon footprints by all three: customers, employees, and the businesses.
As Isabel Kolic, Executive Director of the Heights Merchants Association says, “a lot of shoppers don’t realize the impact of spending their money at a big online merchandiser like Amazon. While some of that money stays in town to support warehouse and administration jobs for the corporation – a great portion of the money leaves our province and our country.”
Isabel also adds that “this compromises our city’s and province’s ability to create jobs long into the future. Jobs that our kids and grandchildren can prosper by. Jobs that support a lower-carbon economy because they are close to home. So by shopping online with giant or far-away companies, or supporting international businesses rather than those in our communities, we are actually tricking ourselves into false economies. We think it’s cheaper – but it’s going to cost us all in the long run.”
Encourage Sustainable Shopping
Encourage yourself, family, and friends to implement more sustainable shopping habits into daily routine. While supporting local, you can also help empower more environmentally-friendly business practices among businesses in general. By spending our money there, we are telling our local businesses that they are on the right track.
Here are some green practices local businesses have implemented:
- Conversion to energy-efficient LED lighting.
- Repurposing used eye-glasses by donating them to Third World Eyecare Society and repurposing eye-care lenses, as well.
- Using compostable or biodegradable take-out containers, biodegradable, reusable, or paper to-go bags, or other practice to eliminate single-use plastic.
- Planting bee-friendly flowers around the shop and in the neighbourhood.
- Has a building made from recycled elements, non-VOC water-based paint, and a living wall that produces much oxygen for employees and customers.
These are just a few of many – stay tuned this spring to discover the different businesses these green practices belong to!
Support Your Local Businesses
Small local businesses, statistics show, spend a far greater percentage of their revenues on other local suppliers and vendors than large companies whose headquarters are elsewhere, do.
This local spending then creates a flourishing local economy, which supports hundreds more truly local, nearby jobs for employees who can then find employment closer to home.
Shopping at locally-based businesses is not only healthier for our local economy – it is better for the environment as a whole, too!
Have a Personable Experience with Your Local Merchants
Get to know your local merchants. Give them a wave and spare a moment to smile!
Shopping online where your goods are individually shipped to your house dozens of times a year, multiplied by millions of customers, is terrible for greenhouse gas levels. It is far better for the environment to have many of the same items be shipped to your local store – only once, where local customers can show up, buy it and receive it on the same day, with much fewer carbon emissions.
It is also far better for society and a community’s collective mental health to not shop isolated in our own homes, but rather in our neighbourhood where we can all get to know each other.
Join us on Instagram and Facebook as we celebrate local Heights businesses that want to leave our planet in better shape for future generations. The Green Business Spotlight awaits our local merchants!