One of the places where we're most likely to be unnecessarily wasteful is around the office. Think about it: how many crumpled up pieced of paper have you thrown away rather than recycle, simply because your trash can was closer than the recycling bin?
Obviously, the wastefulness doesn't end with paper. Leaving your computer on over night, leaving lights on in unused common areas, etc., really does add up, hurting both the environment as well as your company's bottom line.
The following article, Tl Kleban, illustrates many things you can do to help reduce your waste in the workplace:
If you get a moment, offer to take the trash from the office out to the dumpster and take a look at how much is wasted material. I bet you didn’t realize how much recyclable garbage is just thrown away by the people you work with at the office nearly everyday. It’s up to you to educate the company and your fellow employees about recycling and the office can easily and effectively change the way it operates.
Unfortunately, you and your coworkers are just too busy to notice the waste or consider the impact of your inefficient actions. It’s up to you to show how going green is even easier than they can imagine and gaining in popularity with the bosses since it will immediately save money. Here are just some of the ways your office can being working in an environmentally friendly way.
- Make it the company’s monthly goal to consistently try and lower the utility bill by 2-3% or reduce the office supply expenses by about 15-20%. By lowering the waste of paper in the office, you not only save money but also some beautiful trees. Make it a company goal to waste less.
- Come up with some type of a corporate green policy for the company. All it takes is one person to make a difference so think of all the good it would do if everyone followed your lead. Give it out to all employees and even some customers.
- Speaking of office supplies, what better way to save some trees that buying recycled if and when possible. Almost everything needed to run a small office can now be purchased from recycled products. Items such as toner cartridges, paper goods, and plastics are available in recycled form and costs much less too.
- Whenever office items such as any lights, computers or appliances like the coffee pot are not in use, turn them off and unplug them. When it is time to purchase a new piece of equipment for the office, shop around for Energy Star models to be sure you are getting something environmentally friendly.
- Try not to drive as much. If you’re out on the road running a few errands, try to get everything done while you are already out and about. Finish off the errand or make a delivery but then on your way home, stop at the store for any items you may need at the office. If your office is close enough, walk to the store instead of driving. Set up a carpool for any employees who live close to one another.
- Go through the office or at least have maintenance go through and replace all of the incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent ones which use less energy and last longer.
- Instead of just throwing away misprints or unneeded printed pages, use them as scratch paper around the office or as packing materials if your company does any shipping. You can always have your office go 21st century and paperless by doing everything electronically instead of printing.
- Buy supplies from companies who already have green policies in practice. From your supply company to your shipping couriers, every little bit will help. Don’t be afraid to ask a company about their green policies. Many will be proud of what they have in place.
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Truth be told, these are pretty simple steps and wouldn't be hard to implement. Why don't you make it one of your New Year's resolutions to try some of these out?
Mother Nature will thank you for it!