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10 Tips for Going Green at Office

10 Tips for Going Green at Office

10 Tips for Going Green at Office

It’s a common issue for going green at home, but what about at the other places where most of us spend much time, our office. The offices is one of big contributors for energy usage and paper waste. Some simple changes of habit can save energy resources and waste at work.

10 tips for going green at office are:

1. Be bright about light

44 percents of the electricity use in office buildings for lighting

  • Turn off the lights when you’re leaving any room for 15 minutes or more and make it habit
  • Utilize natural light when you can
  • Buy Energy Star-rated lightbulbs and fixtures, which use at least two-thirds less energy than regular lighting, and install timers or motion sensors that automatically shut off lights when they’re not needed.

2. Maximize computer efficiency

Computers in the business sector unnecessarily waste $1 billion worth of electricity a year.

  • turn off your computer—and the power strip it’s plugged into—when you leave for the day. Otherwise, you’re still burning energy even if you’re not burning the midnight oil. (Check with your IT department to make sure the computer doesn’t need to be on to run backups or other maintenance.) During the day, setting your computer to go to sleep automatically during short breaks can cut energy use by 70 percent. Remember, screen savers don’t save energy.
  • invest in energy-saving computers, monitors, and printers and make sure that old equipment is properly recycled. Look for a recycler that has pledged not to export hazardous e-waste and to follow other safety guidelines. Old computers that still work, and are less than five years old, can be donated to organizations that will refurbish them and find them new homes. (You may even get a tax deduction.)

3. Go paperless when possible

  • think before you print: could this be read or stored online instead? When you receive unwanted catalogs, newsletters, magazines, or junk mail, request to be removed from the mailing list before you recycle the item.
  • post employee manuals and similar materials online, rather than distribute print copies. They’re easier to update that way too.

4. Print smarter

The average U.S. office worker goes through 10,000 sheets of copy paper a year.

  • print on both sides or use the back side of old documents for faxes, scrap paper, or drafts. Avoid color printing and print in draft mode whenever feasible.
  • buy chlorine-free paper with a higher percentage of post-consumer recycled content. Also consider switching to a lighter stock of paper or alternatives made from bamboo, hemp, organic cotton, or kenaf. Recycle toner and ink cartridges and buy remanufactured ones. According to Office Depot, each remanufactured toner cartridge “keeps approximately 2.5 pounds of metal and plastic out of landfills…and conserves about a half gallon of oil.”

5. Close the loop

  • purchase office supplies and furniture made from recycled materials.

6. Ramp up your recycling

  • recycle everything your company collects. Just about any kind of paper you would encounter in an office, including fax paper, envelopes, and junk mail, can be recycled. So can your old cell phone, PDA, or pager.
  • place recycling bins in accessible, high-traffic areas and provide clear information about what can and can not be recycled.

7. Watch what (and how) you eat

  • bring your own mug and dishware for those meals you eat at the office.
  • provide reusable dishes, silverware, and glasses. Switch to Fair Trade and organic coffee and tea, and buy as much organic and local food as possible for parties and other events. Provide filtered drinking water to reduce bottled-water waste.

8. Reconsider your commute

  • encourage telecommuting (a nice perk that’s also good for the planet!) and make it easy for employees to take alternative modes of transportation by subsidizing commuter checks, offering bike parking, or organizing a carpool board.
  • carpool, bike, or take transit to work, and/or telecommute when possible. If you need to drive occasionally, consider joining a car-sharing service like Zipcar and Flexcar instead of owning your own wheels.

9. Rethink your travel

  • invest in videoconferencing and other technological solutions that can reduce the amount of employee travel.
  • take the train, bus, or subway when feasible instead of a rental car when traveling on business. If you have to rent a car, some rental agencies now offer hybrids and other high-mileage vehicles.

10. Create a healthy office environment

  • use nontoxic cleaning products. Brighten up your cubicle with plants, which absorb indoor pollution.
  • buy furniture, carpeting, and paint that are free of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and won’t off-gas toxic chemicals.

Via SierraClub

Comments

  1. This post is really very informative. Thank you very much.

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