Contrary to what most people think, there are lots of opportunities to go green in the office. Energy consulting firms know this. Companies do not have to spend a large sum of money to make their office green. You can adjust the lighting system in your office and this can already translate to significant savings annually. In this quick guide we present some ideas that you can use if you want to make your office more eco-friendly.
Buy green products such as refillable pens, staple-less staplers and those made from recycled materials. You can also encourage your employees to cut down or completely eliminate the use of certain products.
If you really need to use a printer, then use recycled paper and print on both sides. But as much as possible, avoid printing. You can always send electronic memos if you want to send announcements to everyone in your office. Email is also better than conventional mail because the recipient will receive your message quicker, aside from the fact that it keeps you from using paper.
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A most common issue in the workplace is that employees forget to turn off their desktop computers and laptops before going home. Make sure to remind your staff to switch them off when not in use. It’s also important to keep computer equipment updated so that they are efficient in the use of energy.
If no one is in the room, turn off the lights. Why keep the lights on in the washroom if no one is using it all day anyway? You should also replace old incandescent bulbs with LED bulbs or CFLs because they utilize 75% less energy. Remind your employees to switch off the lights before they leave the office or you can install sensors that can turn them off automatically if no one is in the room. Additionally, use natural light to reduce energy use too.
Heating and Cooling
Heat your office only to 21C maximum if its occupied. The set points for cooling and heating should be 2-3C apart so that your AC does not cycle often. You can utilize caulking and weather-stripping to prevent heat loss from doors and windows, which can really cut down your heating and cooling costs.
Instead of paper towels, encourage the use of hand dryers and cloth towels. Check your taps and toilets to make sure there is no leak. You can also install low-flow faucet aerators, which can cut down the water flow from the taps to avoid wastage.
Aside from the ones we’ve listed above, there are other ways to go green in the office. You can, for example, place a recycling center in your office and empty it regularly. You should also encourage your workers to use real dishes, cutlery, mugs and glasses instead of disposable items. And when cleaning the office, use green cleaning products that are not only good for the environment but are also good for the health.