Harrogate Borough Council is putting its money where its mouth is by sponsored two Green Awards at the Harrogate Advertiser Excellence in Business Awards.
The council has been a supporter of the awards since their inception in 2006, and has usually sponsored an award for small businesses.
This year, however, it is throwing its weight behind the drive to encourage environmental responsibility in the district, by offering Green Awards in two categories: one for businesses employing between one and 49 employees, and another for companies with 50 or more.
According to the criteria published by Harrogate Borough Council (HBC), entrants will need to demonstrate the positive environmental impact of their activities. These might include reducing their carbon footprint, minimising waste, maximising resource efficiency, improving the local environment, or creating an environmentally-aware business.
Examples given by HBC of likely initiatives include installing renewable energy, addressing carbon emissions in supply chains, cutting down on single-use plastic, improving biodiversity in the business premises or in the local area, or showing how environmental risks and issues are dealt with by senior management.
Jean MacQuarrie, editor of the Harrogate Advertiser Series, welcomed the twin awards.
“To sponsor not one, but two, Green Awards is a very high-profile way of demonstrating the importance of the environment in business,” she said.
“Studies have shown that businesses that embrace sustainability tend to outperform those that don’t, and the issue is becoming ever more important to consumers.
“These awards reflect that, and will recognise those companies that are showing through both their ethos and their actions just how important the issue is to them.”