What’s In This Article?
Going green has become the new phenomenon pretty much everywhere you look. Clothing, cars, food, households and even offices have all joined the movement to go green. Numerous people are trying to reduce their carbon footprints for the sake of a better environment but can be cost-efficient as well. You can improve sustainability in the workplace just by adopting multiple big and small changes.
Accelerator Tips for Going Green Workplace Movement
1. Adding Recycling Bins
Adding recycling bins is an easy change to make. Instead of having just rubbish bins, it is important to have recycling bins throughout the office as well. Often employees eat in the office whether they bring their lunch from home or get something from a store, chances are the packaging of what they are consuming is recyclable i.e. an aluminum can, a plastic bottle or packaging, a brown paper bag, napkins, etc. Also, many employees read or pick up a newspaper on their way to work, which is also recyclable. If you don’t have a recycling bin, these items are all going into the trash and not be reused. Make sure you are aware of your building or office’s recycling day and policy and communicate this to coworkers.
2. Concept of reusing your accessories
Does your office consume a lot of coffee? If so, you should consider throw-away cups with mugs or glasses (20 or so) from Tesco or some other cheap outlet, or even suggest to your employees that they should bring their own mugs from home. That way, instead of throwing away each disposable cup, employees can wash their cup when they are finished with it and it can be re-used on the next tea break. Although in the short run it may seem more expensive. In the long run, you are actually saving money and being environmentally conscious. If your office doesn’t have it in the budget to buy real glasses consider getting biodegradable cups that you can recycle.
3. Turn off Unused Appliances
Unplug appliances that are not being used. Common knowledge, but even if an appliance is turned off, it is still using energy if it is plugged in. Unplug items such as printers, coffee machines, monitors and others when they are not in use. Also consider searching for machines such as printers, fax machines and other hardware that are more energy efficient. Make sure to turn every machine off and unplug them when you go home from the night. Although this may seem tedious, it will definitely end up saving you a lot of money.
4. Use of Smart Lights
This step is a lot more complicated, but if you are serious you could consider implementing an automatic light system that turns on when there are people in the room and turns off when there aren’t. You could also suggest to your employees to turn off their desk lights or ask if it would be okay to keep the lights off in the office during the day when it is bright outside. A simpler solution is also to have a maintenance person in your office replace all incandescent bulbs with fluorescent ones if this hasn’t already been done.
5. Set Going Green Challenges in Your Office
Set goals for your office to be greener. For example, challenge your office to lower the utility bill by 1 to 2 % each month. This means turning down the heat and the air conditioning, so be sure to ask your employees to dress accordingly! Also challenge them to cut office expenses by 10%, which can be easily be achieved by cutting paper waste. Use the backs of paper as scrap paper and communicate as much data electronically as possible so you don’t have to print. For example, if your company pays a lot of bills, make sure they are transmitted via the paperless options which are becoming plentiful. Many banks and utility companies allow you to receive paperless statements and also submit your payments electronically, so do take advantage of this. Another easy way to not waste as much paper is to create notepads out of scrap paper. Take around 50 sheets of paper and cut them into quarters before putting a big clip around them. You can divvy these out to employees to jot notes on.
Ask your employees if they do any things in their daily lives (i.e. in their household) to be green. Some of the things they do could be applied in the office, or at the very least may inspire suggestions of what to do to make the office greener. For example, this might inspire employees who live close to each other to carpool together to work. They are saving both petrol, money and helping the environment by doing that.