6 Ways to a Greener Office

Use Reusable Items
Use Mugs with advertising for coffee and water. Give each employee two mugs, one to use at their office workstation and another to use at home. When serving coffee to a client or prospective client give them a mug promoting your business to take with them.

Read Then Print
For some it seems as if the need is to print the email attachment and then read it. The correct order is to read the document on the computer and then print as needed. Do not print the file or the email unless it is needed. Saving paper saves trees and saves energy. If you must print remember to …

Recycle when you can. Make it easy to recycle by placing recycle bins around the office. Soon everyone will not only be recycling at the office but away from the office as well. Also consider using recycled and environment friendly office supplies. It works both ways.

Car Pool
Encourage employees to ride together. You could give those who have joined a car pool a reserved spot near the door. Unless there is an underlying reason, have people who would be attending the same meeting ride together and not take individual vehicles. Think about other ways to ‘car pool’ such as placing an order for office supplies once a week instead as needed to reduce the need for the delivery truck to come to your door with one item or scheduling meetings with clients in the same general area on the same day. Use technology ‘car pooling’ such as conference calls, both voice and video or use the internet to conduct meetings with members of your team or with clients.

Reduce Energy Consumption
Use task lights instead of over abundant overhead lighting. Adjust heating and cooling thermostats a couple of degrees cooler or warmer depending on the season. Turn off lights in unused areas. Put computers, printers and copiers to sleep when not in use. Turn them off at night. Look around to see what may be drawing electric current when not in use. Anything that has an external transformer plug is probably using a small amount of energy at all times. Put them all on a power strip and turn them off when not in use. When was the last time the HVAC system checked? Is it working efficiently? Has a new filter been installed? A dirty filter reduces circulation and efficiency.

Many older electronic appliances use more energy than a new energy efficient model. That old refrigerator that was donated may be using more energy than the cost of use and purchase of a new one. A new LCD computer monitor uses less energy than a CRT model and laptop computers generally use less than a desktop. How old is the copier or laser printer? The saving of energy costs can pay for the replacement in a short period of time.

© 2008-2012 Steven G. Atkinson – All Rights Reserved

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