Greening the office does’t mean spending a lot of money or eliminating comforts we have become accustom to. Going green requires conscious choices like choosing reusable products over disposable ones and conserving when we can. Greening the office is a way people can find eco-friendly solutions in a place that they spend a lot of time. This article will give seven examples of ways for your office to go green.
- Save Energy
Use the energy-saver settings on all electronics and turn them off at the end of the day. Have the computers set to hibernate if they are idle for long periods of time. Install motion sensors on overhead lighting to prevent lighting empty rooms. Take advantage of the natural light from the sun and turn out the lights in the office. If you need lighting use compact fluorescent bulbs instead of incandescent bulbs.
Most offices use those blue recycle bins, but what else can make the office greener? If everyone brings their own cup instead of using disposable ones three or four times a day, imagine the results in a year alone. Also make use of the back of a piece of instead of using another whole sheet when something needs to be written down.
- Go paperless
With email available on smart phones, tablets, and laptops, it would seem that employees would not have as much use for paper today. Whenever possible send contracts through emails and have them electronically signed. This will cut back on the printing and faxing demands of the office. Make sure your work environment has a printing policy so people can only print when necessary, and maybe even set the copier to automatically print on both sides of the paper.
- Nontoxic cleaning supplies
When cleaning or deodorizing the office consider the many brands now offering effective and affordable nontoxic, eco-friendly cleaners. There are several brands of gentle products that contain a lot fewer chemicals and do a comparable job to traditional cleaning supplies. Cutting back on harsh chemicals is not only good for the environment and for the office employees. People with sensitivities and allergies to cleaning chemicals will find it much easier to breathe.
- Environmentally friendly office supplies
You can find green options at most retailers that take the place of traditional products. Buy items made from reclaimed or recycled materials. Any office can start with 100% recycled paper or refillable ink cartridges. Make sure to purchase nontoxic highlighters, markers, and correction fluids or white out.
- Turn down the heat and air
For a green office it is recommended for no higher than 68 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter and no lower than 78 degrees Fahrenheit during the summer. With these thermostat settings, people will also be able to dress more to the weather, not worrying about being hot or cold inside the office. If there are programmable thermostats, program them to lower the temperature at night when no one is around in the office. This is a lot more eco-friendly than keeping the place at a constant temperature. Also, employees can open the windows in mild temperatures.
- Alternative Transportation
Offer an incentive to those who take public transportation, carpool, bike, or even walk to work. Doing so will contribute to cleaner air and healthier employees over time. Some companies even allow for their employees to telecommuting part time. This can help save energy and supplies in the office while it can also improve employee morale overall.
Every single thing we do has an impact on the planet, whether it is good or bad. As individuals we have the power to control most of our own choices. The choices above that can make the office green only skim the surface. There are a myriad of ways to reduce some of the waste and toxins, protect the environment, and make a better home for us all.
Green Clean Commercial Cleaning Services is a certified green cleaning company.