Creating a Green Office Using Recycling
Going green and making your office more sustainable is good for you, your business, and the environment. Small things like recycling or going paperless when possible, or choosing natural instead of artificial light can make a significant impact.
Choosing to turn your office space green can also reduce costs and attract customers and talent that care about our world.
Here are some tips on how you can create a green office using recycling and other eco-friendly practices.
One of the most manageable steps your office can take to being more environmentally friendly is recycling. You can recycle many materials commonly used at the workplace instead of throwing them in the trash.
Start with paper. Have containers throughout the office to which employees have easy access. That way, the paper can either be used for printing again, writing down notes, or something other than going to the garbage. Don’t forget about shredding the paper first, if it’s some critical documentation.
Also, put a general recycling box in the staff room and empty it regularly.
If you must use paper, choose paper goods such as copier paper, files, binders, packing material, paper towels, and calendars made of recycled paper or environmentally-friendly content.
Recycling doesn’t end with paper. All electronic devices that the company does not use anymore can get recycled. Consider adding a sealed compost container in the kitchen or staff room for food scraps. The more areas with a container for recycling, the easier it will be for employees to use them rather than the garbage.
Stop using disposable cutlery
Make the switch to washable mugs, glasses, dishes, and cutlery rather than disposables. Remember, it takes just seconds to wash a coffee cup, and the environmental impact is much more significant than people often imagine.
Multiply the number of working days by the number of coffees a person drinks per day, and soon you will realize how a small action like this can make a big difference.
The same goes for cutlery and disposable crockery.
Reduce waste in office materials and electronics
Shop for green products such as staple-less staplers and pens that can be refilled repeatedly rather than thrown into the garbage.
Find products that are made from materials that have been collected back from previous products and remade into new ones, such as recycled paper and plastic products.
Try to reduce or eliminate your use of products with no green alternatives, such as rubber bands.
Remember to recycle used office supplies whenever possible.
If you cannot afford to buy exclusively sustainable products, you can focus on specific areas with a substantial overall impact, such as more efficient electronics.
This includes equipment like air conditioners, computers, and lunchroom appliances. Check your office and look at lighting options. Depending on the types of lighting you currently have, you may upgrade to more energy-efficient light options.
They may cost a little more initially, but they use less electricity and last way longer than standard lightbulbs.
When shopping, remember to look at the energy use ratings before making the final purchase.
Keep computer equipment updated; current new computers and monitors are more energy-efficient than those just a few years old.
When replacing computer equipment, try to donate your old stuff to a charity or nonprofit if possible. Otherwise, take it to an electronics recycling facility.
Save energy and water
If you aim to save money on bills and improve your office’s sustainability, make sure that lights and computers don’t stay on overnight.
Talk to your employees and establish a rule that the last person in the restroom or the building should turn off the lights behind themselves. This small step is an excellent reminder to everyone in the company that they are responsible for making the business as green as it can be.
If you can afford it, install motion-activated lights that turn off after a period with no movement. On your devices, enable power-saver modes, which will put computers, printers, and other electronics to sleep or shut them down entirely.
Even just fixing that leaking bathroom tap right away can have a substantial positive impact down the line.
Once you choose to go green in your office, new sustainable ideas will constantly be occurring to you. Before you know it, you will be saving energy, money, and, most importantly, our planet.