The “going green” movement has been hyped up for so long for an important reason. Just recently, the White House released the Third US National Climate Assessment (NCA) that emphasizes the impact of climate change to regions in the United States. For instance, the new findings confirm that the summer season is longer and rains are heavier. It is not only the US that is experiencing the negative effects of climate change; even Australia is experiencing climate change and reaping the consequences of environmental irresponsibility.
Businesses and other workplaces play a huge role to help curb climate-change impacts. If your office is still not into the green movement, it’s time to start with these simple practical tips that will not only help save the environment, but will also help you save money.
Let employees work from home
Telecommuting will decrease your electricity consumption and will give employees flexibility. Maximize the technology you have available — connect employees virtually through collaborative smartphone and web-based apps and other tools such as video chat, Internet phones, online fax, and instant messenger. If virtual presence is enough to get work done, then allow employees to work from home.
Encourage carpools/group commutes
Imagine the gallons of gas that could be saved if your employees would only go to work in carpools. You can also motivate them to ride bikes in groups. This will not only help them save money, it may also be a way for them to bond with their colleagues and get some much-needed exercise.
Choose reusable eating utensils
Quit buying paper plates, paper cups, and plastic spoons and forks for your office parties. Instead, buy utensils that you can wash and reuse. If you absolutely have to go disposable, then choose utensils made from biodegradable materials.
Redesign your workspaces
You don’t have to do an overhaul of your office rooms for this. You can start with simple changes such as choosing better lighting, adding trashcans for recyclable waste and pet bottles, and decorating with potted plants that help clean the air. If you’re in the process of reconstructing or constructing your office space, think about how you can let natural light and fresh air in. You can also purchase recycled furniture.
Choose green materials
A lot of stores already sell green office supplies such as calculators made from recycled plastic, pens made from recycled paper, biodegradable soaps, recycled printer cartridges, and refillable pens and markers. A lot of these are more affordable than their non-recycled or disposable counterparts. If you can, buy in bulk to cut even more on costs.
Reduce and recycle your re-use
Choose to go for a paperless office. Use Internet fax, send newsletters and other promotional materials in digital form, and view documents from your PC instead of printing them out. If you have old printers and fax machines you need to get rid off, sell them to an e-waste recycling facility.
Yes, it’s disappointing to know that even Australia is experiencing climate change, but the good news is that you can do something about it now.
Author: Cristina Beltran is a blogger and writer at 21stCenturynews.com.au.