Small business and ecoBiz success stories near century mark
CCIQ’s successful business sustainability program ecoBiz has gone from strength to strength as the program approaches 100 partners.
Thousands of small businesses across Queensland have taken advantage of the ecoBiz program over three years and seen the benefits of significant savings on their bills.
On average, ecoBiz energy star partners reduced their energy use by 25 per cent, water star partners reduced their water use by 28 per cent, and waste star partners reduced their waste production by 34 per cent. In dollar terms, businesses who have made cost savings so far have saved a total of $1,167,276.31 (energy), $173,015.42(water) and $26,868.60 (waste).
Small businesses can learn more about the ecoBiz program at a special event in Brisbane on Tuesday March 7, at which CCIQ CEO Stephen Tait and Queensland Environment Minister Dr Steven Miles will host a Leaders Forum and present certificates of achievement to star partners.
The forum, Energy Efficiency and Renewables in the Food and Beverage Supply Chain, follows the case of a local boutique brewery with a passion for sustainability and local sourcing, with an optional tour of a large beef processing plant that is generating its own energy.
Hosts Malty Grains Cellar Door and Restaurant, run by ecoBiz 3 Star Partner Beard & Brau Farmhouse Brewery, will talk about their experience in establishing and running an efficient boutique brewery with sustainability at its core.
Beard & Brau owner and head brewer Chris Herring says the brewery is committed to ecofriendly practice and is actively working to keep business within the region.
“Through local sourcing and continuing to find new ways to save energy, we have been proactive in achieving substantial efficiency savings, including 100 per cent rain water use and 23 per cent energy savings. We have also significantly cut energy costs from $700 to $480/KL beer,” he said.
A short workshop will follow on sustainable business and local sourcing before a presentation and networking occasion to celebrate the latest ecoBiz Star Partners, including some locally sourced food and beverages.
In the lead up to this event CCIQ ecoBiz, in conjunction with Teys Australia, Australia’s second largest meat processor and exporter, will be conducting an optional site tour of their award-winning waste water treatment plant and biogas treatment facility.
The Teys Australia Beenleigh site treats its own waste water and at the same time, collects methane from a covered anaerobic lagoon, which it then burns to generate energy on site. Teys has a long history in energy efficiency, and is an early adopter in Australia in Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) sustainability reporting.
Mr Tait said the Leaders Forum will be a valuable experience for small business owners throughout South East Queensland interested in cutting the water, waste and energy bills.
“This event will present leaders the opportunity to network with like-minded business owners who know and understand the relevant economic and environmental challenges faced by businesses within the region,” he said.
To become a star partner, businesses sign up to the ecoBiz program and receive expert advice from consultants to make energy savings. If they hit a 10 per cent reduction target, they achieve a Star partner rating.
EcoBiz program coordinator Alex Hayes-Graham said the first star partner was Gold Coast carpet and tile manufacturer Beaulieu in May 2015 and there are now 80 businesses on board.
The latest addition is JBF Group, who have saved 32 per cent off their energy usage and 23 per cent reduction in waste. This Brisbane-based fibreglass design, manufacture and repair a range of products from as small as the palm of your hand up to 400 cubic metre cool rooms.
“EcoBiz has engaged over 4000 businesses across the state over three years. We’ve delivered training and information to over 3000 people through our online series and supported 875 one-on-one advisory sessions,” Mr Hayes-Graham said.
“EcoBiz helps you cut the cost of energy, water and waste costs through improved practices.
“You're able to reduce the cost associated with providing your product or service through benchmarking and implementing ecoBiz practices.
“When you put ecoBiz practices into place, you achieve a more efficient and productive workplace. All of our past ecoBiznesses tell us the savings they made in their business were not from cutting their bills alone.”
Mr Tait said ecoBiz had been a champion environmental warrior and would continue to help small businesses become greener and leaner – and save on their bottom line.
“It has been a vital component in the many products services we offer at CCIQ and long may it continue,” he said.
Queensland Environment Minister Dr Steven Miles welcomed the ecoBiz support for small business.
“This program has undoubtedly helped both Queensland businesses and the environment,” he said.
“The financial benefits of implementing eco-efficiency measures in small business can be seen almost immediately, through a reduction in costs associated with water, energy use and waste.
“Business and industry play a crucial role in helping Australia become more sustainable while remaining competitive.”
Leaders Forum, March 7
Time: 3:00pm (sharp) – 5:30pm
Venue: Malty Grain, Bahrs Scrub Site. 180 Beaudesert Beenleigh, Qld 4207
Optional Tour Details, March 7
Maximum 20 attendees (Please register to join the waitlist if you wish to attend)
Time: 1:00pm (sharp) – 2:30pm
Venue: Teys Australia, Beenleigh Site. 112-148 Logan River Rd, Beenleigh, Qld 4207
Note: Closed footwear is required for the Teys Australia site inspection and safety gear will be provided.
All Media welcome to attend