Sustainability initiatives are here to stay. More than ever before, we have a greater understanding of how human activities impact the health of the environment.
When we practice sustainability collectively, such as at work, our efforts go further. Changing our habits helps us use resources more efficiently and leads to less waste. Follow these five quick tips for a green, eco-friendly office.
1. Reduce Beverage Waste
Water and coffee are two of the most consumed beverages in the workplace. People need to stay hydrated every day, and millions of workers drink coffee every Monday through Friday to kick-start productivity.
Install a bottle-less water cooler that filters tap water on demand for a refreshing drink. Encourage employees to bring reusable water bottles to work.
Making coffee consumption more environmentally friendly is a simple way to reduce waste. Brew drip coffee with a reusable filter. Single-serve coffee machines generate a lot of garbage that ends up in landfills.
2. Reduce Energy Consumption
Reducing energy consumption helps the environment and your business’s bottom line. Make simple changes to see big results. Here are a few things you can do:
- Buy energy-efficient equipment, including computers, monitors, printers, and copiers.
- Set your thermostat for energy savings.
- Use motion sensors to keep lights on when people are in the office and off when the office is empty.
- Turn off electronics at the end of the day. Many devices still use power when they’re powered off. You can use a surge protector to cut power to unused devices completely.
3. Save Paper
Offices can use a lot of paper every year, contributing to deforestation, pollution, and high water usage. That’s why reducing paper usage is the third quick tip for a green, eco-friendly office.
The good news is that the digital age makes it easier for workplaces to drastically reduce paper usage. Avoid printing things as much as possible. Instead, use digital forms and keep electronic copies and files when you can. And when you use paper, use it wisely. Print double-sided copies when possible, buy recycled paper, and reuse failed print jobs for scrap paper.
4. Dispose Responsibly
Reducing your consumption of unnecessary items is the best way to limit what ends up in landfills. But even with this effort, you’ll sometimes have waste. While you might be tempted to toss things into the trash haphazardly, you should dispose of items responsibly.
Well-placed, clearly labeled bins and boxes make it easy to recycle items. Place paper, plastic, glass, and metal recycle bins in the break room and in the office space. Put an ink and toner cartridge box by the copy machine. And since you can’t simply toss batteries because they’re corrosive, keep a small collection bin and dispose of batteries properly.
5. Establish an Eco-Friendly Team
Create an office culture that prioritizes sustainability. Put together a small team of eco-conscious people who can set up realistic sustainability goals and initiatives for your office. They’ll be your sustainability task force and make the process fun.
The green team can hold regular meetings to discuss goals, check-in, and report progress. Organizing fun projects can keep sustainability at the forefront of your company’s culture. The team can measure and monitor the effectiveness of the initiatives and how these changes affect the office.