Thinking Of Going Green? Eco-Friendly, Low Cost Ideas

Are you the CEO or the maintenance worker?  Do you work for a multi-million dollar company or a ma-and-pa shop?  No matter what your title or what industry you work in, there are lots of simple, eco-friendly things you can do at work.

 

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If you are the boss, make some (or all) of these changes and encourage employees to jump right in.  If you are the low man on the totem pole, try giving your boss a few suggestions or start a few initiatives on your own.Going Green & Eco Friendly

Here are 13 great ways to turn your business green.

1.  Use recycled paper

According to RecycleWorks.org, for every 20 cases of 100% recycled you buy, you will help save 17 trees, 390 gallons of oil, 7,000 gallons of water, 4,100kwh of energy and 8 cubic feet of landfill space.  You will also help eliminate 60 pounds of air-polluting emissions.

2.  Recycle…everything

In the office, start a recycling bin for paper.  Don’t forget that things like used envelops and junk mail can be tossed in too.  In the kitchen, set out tubs for plastics, metals, and paper.  Place a recycling can next to the trash can in the parking garage.

3.  Encourage green transportation

Post a carpool sign-up sheet.  Talk to public transportation officials and see if you can get a bus stop close by.  Set up a bike rack for employees and customers.  Place a picnic table in the courtyard; encourage employees to bring their lunch instead of travel to local eateries.

4.  Give your company the green light

Install compact fluorescent light bulbs.  Motion sensors can be used in low traffic rooms; this will help save electricity if people forget to turn off lights.

5.  Be smart about your electronics

Turn off (better yet…unplug) equipment when you leave at night.  If you need to buy new equipment, look for options with the Energy Star.

6.  Be paperless

Switch to electronic bills and newsletters.  You can even go so far as eliminating paychecks and setting up direct deposit for all your employees.

7.  Don’t cover it up

If you company sends a lot of faxes, get rid of the cover page.  It’s just a waste of paper.  Even better, scan your document and email it instead of faxing.

8.  Recycle and Reuse

Buying recycled paper is only half the battle.  Make sure your employees are reusing it too.  Set the printers and copy machine to print of both sides.  Reuse non-confidential paper as packing material and scratch paper.  If your company has an in-house day care, let the kids color on the backs of the paper.

9.  Keep it cool

Install an automatic thermostat.  It will automatically adjust the temperature when no one is in the building.  If you don’t want to spend the money on a new thermostat, put a sticky note on the door to remind yourself to change the temp before you leave.

Eco friendly, Going Green

Eco friendly, Going Green—oiyou (Flickr.com)

10.  Don’t be temporary – be permanent!

Encourage your employees to do away with disposable water bottles.  If the tap water isn’t up to par, install a filter.  While you’re at it, pitch the Styrofoam coffee cups too.  Let everyone know they should bring a reusable water bottle or cup for their beverages.

11.  Green cleaning

Buy eco-friendly cleaning supplies.  If you can’t find any at your local grocery store, check online.  Or, you can make your own.

12.  Stay at home

Reduce the amount of business travel that your company engages in.  If you absolutely need a face-to-face with someone, try Skype.

13.  Reward good behavior

Is there one employee who volunteers to take things to the recycling center each week?  Give her a half day off.  Is the office staff making huge strides in the effort to be more eco-friendly?  Give them gift cards to a local restaurant.

These suggestions may seem small and insignificant, but they really make a big difference.  Give them a try!  Is there something your company does that we left off the list?  Let us know!

Dr. Mary Tejada manages a clinic that performs hair transplants in Tampa, Florida.  The clinic is very green, implementing eco-friendly tips whenever possible.  Their favorite eco-friendly tip involves bring-your-lunch-from-home picnics in the courtyard! 

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