This morning we awoke to the fantastic news that the EU is banning single-use plastics in a bid to decrease ocean pollution.
The new law which is set to come into play in 2021 is definitely a step in the right direction but it also got us thinking, what else can we do to help the environment?
With the United Nations’ scientific panel predicting that we will face an environmental crisis as early as 2040, we really can’t afford to put the issue off any longer.
Here are a few simple ways that you can make an impact in your workplace.
Aim for a paperless office
A completely paper-free office may seem unrealistic, but there are things that you can do to cut down on paper waste. Only print documents that are absolutely necessary. Encourage your colleagues to use software like Google Docs to allow for easy online sharing.
Only use 100% recycled paper products in the office. This can include brochures, company notebooks and even printer paper.
Invest in reusable silverware
You don’t need paper plates or plastic cutlery and stirrers. Reduce the amount of waste your company produces by having a fully stocked kitchen complete with glasses, mugs and utensils. It’s an easy way to get rid of pointless waste. Plus, in the long run, you will reduce costs.
Encourage cycling to work
Installing a bike rack is a relatively easy, one-time investment that can have a huge impact on how your employees commute into work.
It will encourage your employees to get fit and healthy while also thinking about their environmental impact. Another great incentive is the Bike to Work scheme which saves workers up to 51% on the cost of a bike.
Switch to LED light bulbs
Everyone is always harping on about LED light bulbs but what difference do they really make?
Well, compared to traditional incandescent or compact fluorescent bulbs, LED bulbs use 75% less energy and can last more than three times as long. It’s a quick and cheap change that can make a huge difference.
Unplug your devices at the end of the day
It’s not enough to simply shut down your computer at the end of the day. Did you know that power is still being used if things are left plugged in? Phantom power, or standby power, can cause your company’s energy bills to skyrocket if not addressed.
Invest in an office watercooler and encourage people to bring their own reusable water bottles with them. Why not print company branded bottles and give them out to members of staff in order to get the ball rolling?
Promote a flexitarian diet
Livestock are responsible for about 14.5% of global greenhouse gas emissions, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation.
Various different reports have pointed to the flexitarian diet as a way of reducing the effects of global warming. Under this diet, meat consumption is restricted to one or two days per week. You can encourage this in our workplace by having veggie options in the canteen or by sharing recipes with colleagues.