Here we will go over how you can create a more sustainable workplace. Sustainability is all about protecting our earth by limiting carbon dioxide emissions and reducing, reusing, and recycling everyday materials. No matter the type or size of business, you can incorporate new procedures and products into your workplace to have a greener impact on our earth.
Let’s jump right in!
Recycling is an essential part of becoming a more sustainable workplace. When you recycle, you help the world become a cleaner place, save energy, and reduce the amount of garbage in landfills.
The most essential reason to recycle is the impact it has on the earth. By recycling items like paper, plastics, cans, etc., you help preserve virgin resources that are in short supply, like our trees.
Some of the most common items that a business can recycle are:
- Cans and bottles
- Plastic containers
Add recycling cans next to the garbage cans in your workplace, and your employees will happily use them.
Cut Back on Disposable Items
Cutting back on disposable items is another way to be sustainable by keeping garbage out of landfills, preserving resources, and limiting carbon emissions.
Here are some ways to cut back on disposable items.
- Repair materials when possible
- Keep mailing lists up to date to limit paper waste
- Reuse manilla envelopes and boxes
- Use paperless billing and communications
- Use washcloths instead of cleaning wipes and dishes instead of plastic utensils, plates, and cups.
A bonus of decreasing the use of disposables is that it saves your business money.
Upgrade to Solar Power
One of the most effective ways to create a sustainable workplace is by switching your power source to solar panels.
Solar panels are a better energy alternative because they:
- Save energy
- Are a renewable energy source
- Last for about 25 years and are low maintenance
- Do not contribute to air, water, or noise pollution
- Help slow climate change
When you transition to solar power, your electricity bill can go from hundreds each month to just a few dollars. Of course, the elimination of carbon emissions is what really makes solar power worth the switch.
The average solar-powered home saves about 182 metric tons of carbon dioxide from being pumped into the atmosphere over its 25-year life expectancy. This is the equivalent of 40 years of driving a car.
Use Energy Efficient Appliances and Lighting
We often overlook the impact our everyday items like appliances and lighting have on the earth.
Most workplaces have many items that can be replaced with more economically friendly options. Here are some examples of appliances and electronics that have energy-efficient alternatives.
- Air conditioners
- Laptops instead of desktops
- Water heaters
- LED bulbs instead of fluorescent or incandescent bulbs
Another tip for being more efficient is turning off energy-consuming electronics when not in use.
Replacing items that waste energy with greener options helps reduce emissions, save energy and money.
Make Environmentally Conscious Travel Decisions
When the covid-19 pandemic hit, most of us stayed indoors for months. Although the isolation was difficult at times, the decrease in travel was highly beneficial to the environment. In fact, during the quarantine period, the world saw a 30% decrease in carbon dioxide emissions.
The drastic decrease in CO2 emissions occurred because many cars were off the road. Although quarantine is over, your business can still help limit these emissions by choosing environmentally conscious travel options like biking, public transportation, and walking.
Businesses should also consider holding virtual meetings and offering remote work opportunities to help cut back on unnecessary travel.
Additionally, if your business participates in many work trips, you can limit emissions by; having your employees carpool while away, lodge in man camps when their worksite is far from hotels, and pack reusable items.
Make Your Efforts Known
Lastly, be sure to make sustainability efforts known across the workplace.
If your employees are aware of the upgrades, plans, and efforts initiated at work, they will be more than happy to make environmentally conscious decisions.
Consider the following:
- Placing signs around the office that outline the benefits of being sustainable
- Offering incentives to those making green decisions.
- Starting a recyclable items drive (collect and donate reusable items)
- Holding a meat-free day in the cafeteria each day ( the meat industry plays a large part in climate change)
Making your efforts known will boost company morale, teach employees how to be sustainable, and condition healthier habits that can be practiced at home.