Reduce, Reuse, Recycle: Nine Ways to Keep Your Office Green
Recycling is not a new concept, but the ways in which we can recycle are increasing faster than ever. Everything from printer toner to food waste can now be properly reused, recycled, or composted. Recycling in the office just takes a little extra encouragement and dedication.
Here are some simple suggestions to keep your office green:
- Offer paper recycling. Put a paper-recycling receptacle next to each printer, copier and fax machine. Discuss recycling with your cleaning crew or appoint a person to bring your paper to a recycling center each week.
- Switch to recycled office supplies whenever possible, such as high post-consumer recycled content paper.
- Recycle your ink and toner cartridges. Office supply companies like Staples and Office Depot will take your old cartridges and give cash incentives for recycling them!
- Donate functioning old laptops, printers and other office equipment to charity organizations.
- Buy higher end office equipment so you need to replace items less frequently; cost per use is a useful financial metric.
- Encourage employees to shut down their computers when they leave the office for the day.
- Use environmentally friendly cleaning products, which help protect the health of your employees and cleaning staff by eliminating harmful substances and abrasive odors from the office.
- Encourage telecommuting, biking, and other green transportation. Your transportation policies can make a huge difference.
- Go green — literally. Make your office green with plants! They absorb airborne pollutants (which are widespread with off-gassing office furniture), and emit healthy negative ions and oxygen into the air.