As a concerned citizen, you want to do your part for the environment. You buy products with minimal packaging; you sort your trash and recycle what you can. Maybe you even compost your kitchen waste and use it in your garden. But what about the office? What can you do to make your workplace greener and more efficient place?
There are things you can do to make your office greener, and you do not have to change the way you work to do them. Here are three tips for going green at the office.
The paperless office may be more of a dream than a reality, but you can do your part to make it happen. Going paperless as much as possible is one of the easiest ways to make your office more environmentally friendly, and it starts with every decision you make.
Before you print a document, ask yourself if you need a hard copy. Would it be easier to email the document to a coworker? Can you display those PowerPoint slides on the big screen instead of handing them out at the meeting? Every piece of paper you do not print makes a difference, so make the paperless office your ultimate goal.
Maximize Natural Light
Office lighting is a common source of complaints among workers. Some people are troubled by the harsh fluorescent lights in office buildings, while others claim this type of lighting triggers headaches and other health issues.
Artificial light is just as bad for the environment, increasing energy usage, and thwarting your attempts to go green. If you want to go green at the office, start by maximizing natural light. Adjusting your workspace to take advantage of the sunlight streaming in the windows can reduce the need for additional lighting - and reduce your carbon footprint in the process.
Turn Off Electronics, Lighting, and Heat Every Evening
The typical office uses a lot of energy to run computers, power overhead lights, and keep the workspace at a comfortable temperature. And that is fine during the day when workers are busy doing their jobs and that energy usage is essential.
When it is time to close up shop and head home, make sure you turn off all the lights and turn down the thermostat. Installing an automatic timer for the lights and a smart thermostat for the heat can help you do these things more effectively, so think about that upgrade.
If you want to reduce your energy usage, even more, ask employees to power down their computers and unplug their devices before they leave the office each night. It may take a few extra minutes each morning to start things up, but the energy savings will be well worth the slight inconvenience.
Going green does not have to be a hassle, and it does not have to interfere with the operation of your business. Whether you own the business or work for the company, there are steps you can take to go green at the office, so you can feel better about the environment you are creating.
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