Be a part of the Global Clean-up
Saving the environment is the hot topic on everyone’s lips this year, as the impact of our plastic usage dawns on us, and the continued effect of Global Warming becomes more real.
The fact of the matter is, that we all need to play a part, however small, in reducing our carbon footprint, and helping the environment. This extends beyond the home, we need to infiltrate this philosophy into every area of our lives, including our workspaces.
Despite common misconceptions, going green in the office really isn’t as difficult\u200a or costly \u200aas you might think. Simply making a few small changes can have a significant impact on your office’s environmental contribution. Here are a few other ways that you can become more proactive, and play your part in helping with this huge environmental crisis:
Simply putting your computer to ‘sleep’ or ‘hibernate’ at the end of the working day isn’t enough. Standby power is still consumed and can become a huge, unnecessary expense for your company, as well as being a drain on environmental resources. Encourage staff to get into the habit of turning off devices before leaving the premises to avoid wastage.
MAY THE FORCE BE WITH YOU
The Ecoforce range of cleaning chemicals delivers outstanding cleaning results and have been independently awarded the Ecolabel; the official European environmental standard. These products are truly green, safer for aquatic life, use less hazardous materials, are kinder to the environment and perform to the highest level.
SEE THE LIGHT
A well-lit workspace is essential for maximum efficiency, keeping windows clutter free and blinds open during working hours will ensure you make the most from natural light sources and avoid using unnecessary electricity.
Where less well used rooms have limited or no access to natural light, consider using motion activated light switches to avoid reliance on staff to switch off before leaving. They are a great solution in particular for bathroom, kitchen and conference areas where usage is very sporadic.
AVOID AIR-CON WARS
In the warmer months, it’s tempting for some to crank up the air-conditioning unit, much to the despair of others who then turn it back down again! In truth, the closer you can run the temperature in the office to the temperature outside, the more economical it will be, keeping a constant temperature will maximize energy efficiency. Restrict access to the thermostat to avoid fluctuations, and keep the dial at a comfortable temperature, most studies suggest this is around 21 degrees.
DETOX THE FRIDGE
Every time the fridge door is opened moisture is let in, which can build up around the coils causing frost to form. This will lead to a restricted airflow, meaning the fridge will use more energy to keep a constant temperature.
Keeping your office fridge clean and regularly defrosted will save energy in the long run.
EMPOWER YOUR WORKFORCE
Likelihood is, within your workforce there will be eco-minded individuals who would love the chance to be more proactive within the workplace and help you on the path towards a greener environment. Recuit these individuals onto a committee, empower them to make changes to help reduce your carbon footprint.
RECYCLE OLD ELECTRONICS
Declutter the office cupboards and dig out all your old broken and obsolete electronics. Look into recycling companies who will remove these materials securely, safely dispose of sensitive data, and recycle them. Some companies even offer a rebate for recyclable goods. Win Win!
Not all roles are suitable for remote working, but where possible, homeworking should be actively encouraged. You’ll reduce carbon emissions from commuting, as well as cost savings in the office.
ENCOURAGE GREENER COMMUTING
Where home working isn’t an option, encourage staff to use greener methods of commuting to and from work. Install a secure bike rack on the car park, install a shower at the office and look into ‘bike to work’ schemes.
Carpooling can be an effective way of reducing your company’s carbon footprint, this will also reduce demand on the company car park!
LED bulbs use 75% less energy than their traditional alternatives and can last more than three times as long, so you will be buying them much less frequently, helping you to cut costs. LED bulbs are non-toxic and recyclable helping you to also reduce your carbon footprint.
DITCH THE PLASTIC
We’ve discussed how you can de-plastic your office in more detail in this edition of Spotlight.