Taking care of our environment is becoming more of a necessity every day. It has become a priority for many businesses to think eco and brainstorm ways to implement office-wide energy saving practices. With many options available to make your business more eco-friendly, there is really no excuse not to try some of these fast and easy ways to “go green”.
1. Recycle and reduce paper consumption: Many offices now have scrap boxes for paper to minimize usage of post-it notes. Also, a scrap box near the printer will keep perfectly good paper from going to waste if you mistakenly print a page with one line on it. Invest in 100% recycled paper instead of the standard 30%. Make it an office policy that only certain items can be printed, and encourage your employees to share documents digitally by email or using Google documents.
2. Turn off electrical devices: Some employees keep their computer on overnight, but turning off a computer will save on your electricity bill and reduce energy consumption by up to 50%. Use the energy-saving settings on the computer to hibernate computers that are left idle for over an hour. Use timers to turn off lighting throughout the office. Turn off printers, scanners, fax machines, photocopiers that are not being used. Even leaving phones or laptops on charge when they don’t need to be uses up unnecessary electricity. Research devices that can help you with limiting unnecessary electrical waste, like a smart power strip.
3. Switch to high-efficiency heating and cooling: Most offices are air conditioned, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be eco-conscious with the way you cool or heat your office space! Install high-efficiency units, saving you money and doing well for the environment. You can also purchase programmable thermostats to set different temperatures for weekends or evenings.
4. Change the bulbs: Fluorescent lighting is more energy and cost efficient, and nowadays it isn’t as harsh and unappealing as it used to be. If you can’t afford to install new lighting, switch your existing lighting to LED bulbs that use less energy.
5. Make your break room eco-friendly: Put recycling bins in the lunchroom to encourage your employees to separate and recycle their trash. Many items can be recycled or donated to charitable causes, like the metal tabs from cans. Put up posters explaining how we can all help in saving the environment. Provide fair trade, organic coffee. Have a supply of dishes, mugs, and cutlery to discourage employees bringing in plastic bags, coffee cups and paper plates.
People follow good example, so work hard to be a leader! Together, you and your employees can make a difference and encourage visitors to your office to follow suit.