Manage environmental risks and other climate risks to your business
Climate change is increasingly recognised as a risk for business owners.
Climate-related risks to your business may include:
- growing frequency and/or severity of extreme weather – you may have increasing insurance costs, more damage to property and resources, and disruption of power and water. Customers may be unable to visit or contact your business, or suppliers may be unable to deliver goods or services.
- decreasing demand – there may be less demand for your goods and services if they are not environmentally friendly, or competitors with more sustainable products or services target your customers. It may also be difficult to attract and retain staff if your business is not sustainable.
- global impacts – overseas suppliers may be unable to deliver goods or services due to climate change events in their country, and the ability of your business to supply overseas customers may be similarly affected. International customers may move towards buying locally.
- increasing costs – you may experience higher costs for the resources you use to run your business. Water restrictions may also affect your business.
Adapt to climate change
Climate change is already impacting small businesses across Queensland. A well-developed business plan can help you identify and prepare for climate-related risks, including in the areas of:
Queensland's Small and Medium Enterprise Sector Adaptation Plan includes simple steps to help businesses adapt or pursue new business opportunities, for example by:
- digitising documents to avoid paper-based systems being ruined by severe weather
- having appropriate insurance
- accessing mentoring programs.
The plan was developed by the Business Chamber Queensland with funding under the Queensland Climate Adaptation Strategy (Q-CAS) (PDF, 2MB). It is one of 7 Sector Adaptation Plans developed by Queensland's business and industry sectors under Q-CAS.
There may be regulatory reporting requirements for your business and penalties may apply for non-compliance.
Corporations that meet a National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting threshold must register and report each year. Find out how to assess your reporting obligations.
For more information on licences or permits for your business:
- learn more about environmental licences and permits
- visit ABLIS (Australian Business Licence and Information Service) to check your licensing requirements online.
Prepare a climate risk management plan
Assess how climate change is already affecting your business and how it could affect it in the future. Identify the risks that climate change brings to your business and prepare a risk management plan that deals with climate change.
Taking steps now to address climate risk can save your business from financial or other problems. Understanding the changing social and economic trends due to climate change can help you to improve the competitiveness and future viability of your business.
Learn what the latest science says about the projected future climate for Queensland at the Queensland Future Climate Dashboard.
Find out how to develop a risk management plan to help your business cope with climate change risks.
- Find more information about increasing the energy, water and waste efficiency of your business.
- Learn about support to help your business go green.
- Last reviewed: 11 Jul 2022
- Last updated: 23 Mar 2023