Our planet needs us. It is our job to take care of the environment, our homes, and our working spaces. The quality of our lives depends on that. Aside from making our homes more sustainable, we should also think about how to create an environmentally friendly office.
By Saving Electricity, You Save the Planet
It may seem like a mission impossible, but reducing energy usage is a pretty straightforward step to take if you want your working space to become an eco-friendly oasis. Remember, a sustainable lifestyle comes with many benefits. The goal is a healthy environment but also cost-effectiveness.
It may surprise you how much you can save on electricity bills if you replace incandescent lights with LED bulbs. LED bulbs cost a bit more than traditional lights, but look at this purchase as a long-term investment. LED bulbs to use between 25 and 80 percent less energy than traditional incandescent lights, and they can last 3-25 times longer.
Don’t Forget About Cooling and Heating Systems
Temperature is a controversial topic in most offices. Every working space has that one person that always complains (maybe you are that person) about the indoor temperature, so making everybody happy and comfortable regarding this aspect can be pretty tricky. But if you all want an environmentally friendly space, changes are inevitable.
During warm months, shutters and natural ventilation can help you regulate the temperature in your working space. You can also consider using fans that are eco-friendly as opposed to air conditioners. Once winter comes, think about the most innovative ways to reduce heating costs. For instance, if you reduce room temperature by 1° C, you’ll save up to 10% on heating costs.
Additional tip: Remove chargers from sockets when you’re not using them. Also, avoid leaving devices in standby mode.
Make Some New Friends, Pardon, Plants
Every environmentally friendly space needs plants. It is said these days, plants are the new pets. People buy them, adopt them, give them names. Some studies have even shown that plants are stronger and healthier if they are played music.
There are many reasons why you should include plants in your working space. From an aesthetic standpoint, they will change the look of your office. From a health standpoint, greenery can positively impact your co-workers’ well-being because it improves indoor air quality.
However, some people are intimidated by plants. Our leafy friends ask for attention and once you bring some into space, make sure to give them the proper care.
Order Office Supplies in an Eco-Friendly Manner
Did you ever received an email with the sentence ”Please, print this email only if necessary.”? Many companies use this phrase to spread awareness about environmental problems. However, the paper is still in use. Pointing fingers is never the solution; ideas and suggestions are. If you can’t prevent paper usage in your office, you can always work on cutting it down.
For example, you can use paper with FSC® certification, which refers to sustainable papermaking resources. On the other hand, technology is evolving, but printers will never go out of fashion. We still use unnecessary amounts of printing paper. If you never thought about this issue, you can easily calculate the cost involved. You probably won’t be amused by the result. One of the best ways to cut down on paper is to change the printer’s default settings to ensure it prints on both sides.
Avoid Plastic Whenever Possible
If you don’t want plastic in your home, why would you want it in your office? Instead of plastic bottles, opt for glass. Say goodbye to plastic windows on envelopes. Stop using plastic pens; pencils are a much better option. Remember, every environmentally friendly office has rechargeable batteries. Also, bring your coffee mug in instead of using disposable cups.
Felt Is the New Black; Trust Us
Felt is a sustainable material, quite suitable for offices. It can be used as a room divider, as wall paneling, or as a pinboard. Also, it positively impacts the office’s acoustics and lighting. If you consider purchasing felt, make sure it is made of recycled and recyclable materials.
Waste Separation Is Not a Waste of Time
These days, waste separation is of the utmost importance. Bigger companies especially need recycling waste sorting areas. Make sure to have separate containers for plastic, cans, glass, paper, and food waste. Pay extra attention to used batteries, and take them to a designated collection point. Your garbage can be someone’s treasure. So if you have some old but functional furniture or computers, consider donating them.
A Healthy Workplace Means Motivated Employees
Creating an environmentally friendly office should not be a challenging task – there are many small steps taken that make a significant difference overall. Working in such a space motivates people and improves their productivity. Anyone that spends up to 8 hours in one place should feel safe and comfortable.