Offices contribute to over 3% of global emissions and cause 1.54 gigatons of greenhouse gases to escape into the atmosphere each year. In order to make positive changes to the environment, it’s imperative that businesses start taking eco-friendliness more seriously.
Reducing your carbon emissions won’t just help the environment, it will also reflect positively on your finances. Less emissions means less bills, which in turn leads to greater profits. In addition, as more consumers begin to acknowledge the importance of protecting the environment, it could lead to more customers.
If you’re looking for ways to improve eco-friendliness around your office, consider taking these four simple steps.
Consider renting a serviced office
Serviced offices are shared buildings that house various businesses under one roof. Because everything is already included – such as furniture and office equipment – you won’t have to spend money on overheads, which can take its toll on both the environment and your finances. In addition, you can rent on a per-desk basis and share a space with other businesses, which will significantly reduce your bills and emissions.
According to an article published on Skyline Offices, many people choose to rent serviced offices near their homes in order to reduce transportation costs. Again, this can significantly decrease vehicle emissions, especially if the office it within walking or cycling distance.
Fundamentally, improving your office’s eco-friendliness shouldn’t be viewed as a chore. The benefits far outweigh the negatives, both from an environmental and business perspective. Even if you can’t make a full-scale overhaul, small changes will make a huge difference.
Go paperless and biodegradable whenever possible
It’s not always necessary to use paper. Go digital whenever possible. Issuing smart phones and tablets to employees may seem expensive; however, over time you will almost certainly recoup the costs. Cloud-based storage solutions will also provide a greater level of security.
Using biodegradable bags for office waste and recycling as much as possible will have many benefits and assist in your businesses desire to be eco-friendly or even carbon-neutral.
If you require paper, use post-consumer recycled paper. According to eFax, every ton ordered will save approximately 24 trees. While it can be a little more expensive, try to recoup the difference by setting a limit on printing and copying to prevent wastage.
Turn off lights and computers
It’s not uncommon for offices to leave on lights and computers 24 hours per day, Monday to Friday. This is a phenomenal waste of energy and can increase your electric bills by up to 40%. Turning off monitors won’t cut it. If computers aren’t in use they should be completely switched off.
The same goes for other office equipment such as copiers, scanners and printers. Just because something is on standby it doesn’t mean it’s not eating energy and increasing your bills.
Get an energy audit
It can be difficult to make changes when you’re not exactly sure what’s wrong. Getting an energy audit will help you pinpoint issues and find ways to improve energy efficiency. For example, every additional degree on your thermostat can increase your annual bills by up to 3%. If your thermostat is slightly above the recommended temperature it may go unnoticed by you and your staff; however, an auditor will spot the problem straight away.
A professional auditor will assess the heating and cooling, insulation, sealing, lighting and general energy consumption in the office. They will then provide a written assessment with information on how to make changes. This assessment alone could help you reduce your energy bills by up to 30%.
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