Thinking of ways your office can cut back on waste and become more sustainable? Do so, and you’ll run a tighter ship while alleviating regional and national (perhaps even global!) waste management resources. All you need to do is follow some practices and buy products from eco-conscious brands.
Here are 10 small-scale things you can do to help minimize waste around your office.
1. Stop throwing out electronics!
It’s tempting to toss electronics when they’re going end of life or right before an upgrade, but that’s never a wise idea.
The obvious reason for this is that electronics like cell phones, computers, and calculators are full of precious resources like gold, silver, palladium, and copper. Either recycle them or, even better, sell them.
2. Join the bag ban movement
States and cities around the country are banning bags and it’s easy to see why. They’re among the most noticeable pieces of the plastic crisis puzzle.
If your business offers bags at points of sale, consider offering recyclable paper options or requiring your customers to bring their own.
3. Get creative with organic waste
Not every office can do this, but if your office location has a garden or landscaping, set aside a compost bin and encourage employees to dump organic waste there instead of in the garbage.
4. Invest in reusable uniform name tags (or at least stop using flimsy paper and plastic name badges)
We get it – your business might require name badges as a part of the employee uniform – but if you do, at least stop using paper and cheap plastic badges.
We recommend upgrading to reusable uniform name tags from Imprint Plus (imprintplus.com). They’re high quality, reusable, and customizable, and they offer many eco-friendly badges made from bamboo, metal, and HDPE.
5. Only allow printing for priorities
We live in a digital era. Your employees likely have phones, computers, and tablets. Don’t print pamphlets and flyers, email them. Create a central depot on your company website where employees can find digital manuals, guides, and other materials.
6. Invest in refillable ink cartridges for the office printers
By the way, you may be able to get refillable ink cartridges for your printer that will help you further cut back on waste!
7. Cut back on single-use plastics
Single-use plastics, like plastic cups and forks, are a big contributor to the plastic crisis. Either require employees to bring their own bottles and silverware from home or stop offering plasticware and cups in the office.
8. Glass and paper are not garbage
This one’s important because it would be very hard to totally eliminate the use of glass and paper from daily life – but you can encourage employees to recycle them instead of throwing them away.
9. Upgrade to LED
LED lights last as much as 25 times longer than incandescent bulbs while also being up to 70% more energy efficient.
If the green movement doesn’t inspire you, upgrade to LEDs to save money.
10. Ditch the water cooler
The classic “corporate water cooler” is a good trope, but it creates a lot of waste. Instead of using these, buy a reusable water filter and keep it in the fridge. It’ll create much less waste.
Do Your Part
Diminishing carbon use, minimizing fossil fuel expenditure, eliminating waste, recycling organic materials, and cutting back on plastic consumption are only some of the ways that we can fight the great economic and ecological crises plaguing the Earth.
But every little bit counts.