Business owners often bemoan the idea of making their office more friendly to the environment. It’s not so much that they don’t care about the environment. It’s just that there are so many things to consider! Where do you start?
Many offices are using fluorescent lighting. Fluorescent lighting isn’t terrible, as its energy cost is fairly low. But they’re also difficult to recycle once they’re dead. Fluorescent lamps usually require special disposal, separate from general and household wastes. This usually creates an added expense, which many companies choose to forego by simply throwing the bulb in the trash. You should strongly consider using alternative bulbs, such as LED. It’s also worth keeping lights off completely during sunlit hours. The windows should be providing enough light.
You need to consider the general electricity efficiency of your office. You could try switching your energy provider to a company like Reliant Energy who offers a green energy plan and this could also mean significant cost savings.
There may be electrical problems in your infrastructure that means you’ll always be using more energy than you actually need. Consider getting an electrician to check the place out. If the problem can’t be fixed, then you may want to consider turning to a business like myBekins to get you and your employees into a more efficient office! If the problems can be fixed, however, it may be worth the expense of getting the work done so you can improve efficiency.
This may seem like an odd one to bring up. But if you’re just starting out a business and haven’t furnished your office yet, then it’s important to consider this. You’re going to be buying a lot of desks and a lot of chairs. Think about it: that’s a lot of material. It’s a lot of wood, plastic and cushioning material. One way to reduce the environmental impact of your office is to make sure the supplier of your furniture makes the products in an eco-friendly way.
There’s much to consider. Is their lumber domestic? Do they use green packaging materials? Is the furniture manufactured and stored locally until shipping? Do they use wood from sustainable species and forests? And will the item you have your eye on by recyclable if it’s no longer required?
The majority of paper is made in a sustainable, eco-friendly fashion. However, this doesn’t mean you should just use tonnes of paper unthinkingly! Recycling paper costs money. Using the printer uses electricity, as does the shredder. And if you’re not getting rid of the paper, then it’s just piling up in your office. Put a restriction on how much employees can use the printer. Use electronic alternatives to receipts. And deal with your mail! Make sure you’re not getting junk mail.
Turn everything off!
If something isn’t in use, turn it off or put it in a low-power rest mode. So many companies leave their computers on at the end of a working day. Sure, it means you don’t have to wait for it to boot up in the morning. That saves time but wastes enormous amounts of energy. Make sure computers are turned off overnight. Consider hooking multiple things up to a power strip. This way you can turn off multiple items with the flick of one switch.