Reducing Waste at Work
by Natassja Wynhorst
In the modern day, we see the evidence of smog and global warming which doesn’t make it difficult to comprehend that we need to clean up our act a little bit.
Much has been discussed how we as individuals can reduce our carbon footprint in our own homes, but what about in the workplace?
How exactly can we reduce our waste in our workplace?
Let’s begin with paper
Almost all offices worldwide rely on paper, whether it be large or small. Reducing the amount of paper and printing materials your office uses on a day to day basis can have a significant positive impact on the mitigation of waste. Suggestions to do so include, using both sides of the paper for printing, shred and reuse the unwanted paper, reuse boxes from shipments, offer paper recycling bins, avoid colour printing to save ink, buy chlorine-free paper, buy paper made from organic materials, utilise emails and use software like ‘Follow Me Printing,’ which can reduce consumption by 25-50%.
And the equipment
The manufacturing of office equipment can contribute highly to reducing the quality of air and landfill waste, depending on the type of industry your business is in. It is time to consider these suggestions when purchasing your new equipment for the business: Invest in buying high-quality furniture and equipment to avoid it becoming obsolete so quickly and reduce furniture and technology waste, recycle your e-waste and unplug the equipment when it is not being used.
What about the electricity
The slightest of changes in the offices A/C, lighting and fixtures can much a huge difference to the businesses energy consumption. Here are some suggestions to reduce the electrical waste: Switch to compact fluorescent light bulbs, buy from a green energy company, turn all electrical outlets off after hours if it’s not necessary, incorporate ‘daylight harvesting’ technologies and take full advantage of the beauty of natural lighting.
Implement workspace vermiculture
Vermiculture is the cultivation of earthworms in order to use them to convert organic waste into fertilizer; this isn’t as queasy as it sounds, and worm farms are becoming quite popular within working environments. Earthworms make a large contribution to improving the environment as when they decompose food scraps, they create methane gas. They are also able to reduce the office’s food waste by as much as 60%.
Don’t forget reducing your commute waste
Yes, the waste within your workplace is also created by how you commute to and from the office daily. There are many simple ways in which you can reduce the workplaces carbon footprint by changing the way you travel, for example: Riding a bike, carpooling with colleagues and catching the local public transport.
There are many changes that can be made to a working environment to reduce the unwanted and unnecessary waste in which is poisoning our environment. Simple acts, such as providing filtered water and reusable cups, instead of plastic bottled water, and buying organic tea and coffee for the lunch room all collate into creating a more energy efficient and environmentally friendly workspace.
Wurkspace 7 are experts in the field of creating workplace strategies to help your office take on the responsibilities and abilities to reduce your office’s waste – Talk to us today.