Office Furniture Go GreenEverybody knows that recycling helps the environment. Sadly, that knowledge doesn’t make us all do it. Instead of settling for what is convenient, being environmentally conscious demands that we reach out a little and get creative in the simple ways that we can take action to help the environment. Here are just a few ideas to get you and your coworkers started on creating a lean green office machine at your work.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

If you don’t already have blue or green recycling containers at your work, get some and put them in a prominent area – or multiple areas to be convenient – by the printers, near each pod of workstations, and in the food area. You’ll be amazed at how quickly they fill up. But don’t forget to reduce and reuse, too. Applied to paper, for example, you can limit your consumption by relying more on electronic files or reading from your monitor – thus reducing – and reuse the back of papers you print out but don’t need anymore to jot notes or messages down throughout the day. Once it’s all used up, then recycle. If you don’t have a recycling program in the community where you work, start one in your office and have a team take it to the next town. Petition your community government to start recycling, and chances are good you’ll be heard. In some states, turning in recycled goods can actually help you raise a lot of cash, too.

Every Little Bit Adds Up

Be on the lookout for other simple energy saving tasks you can do including hibernating your computer for lunch, using washable dishes instead of disposable dishwear, watering the office plants with your leftover ice in your cup, or taking the stairs instead of the elevator, especially if you’re only on the second or third floor.

Ride Your Bike to WorkCarpool

The outrageous gas prices should outweigh the “flexibility” that people rationalize that they need to build into their schedules by driving a car. Many corporations have this program already in effect, allowing co-workers to coordinate among themselves alternating carpools. It means less wear and tear on your car, less gas, less traffic congestion, a healthier environment, a higher likelihood that you’ll either be on time or not look so bad if you arrive late to work. Riding a bike to work is also a great alternative for those who can.

Refurbished Goods and Used Office Furniture

Many companies offer or operate on refurbished goods programs, where you turn back in your computer or phone after it is out of date. Buying used office furniture is also a smart way to simultaneously save money and help the environment. Liquidating your office furniture through an office furniture reseller is a great way to reuse after the fact, and you get some money back.

Do Green Projects with Your CompanyGreen Projects

Several large office buildings have started plant a tree or rooftop greens programs, where the companies within the office contribute to create a greenery, park, or garden on the roof. You can also volunteer your time after work to clean up a polluted nearby park, river, or other natural habitat. Raise awareness by “taking class outside” and working from a covered patio area on your laptop. You can also help stimulate your co-workers’ involvement with environmental efforts by going on a corporate “green” retreat.

Green Donations

Walkathons for the environment and other fundraisers are good ways to contribute to the green initiative. Why not sell green products and donate from the profits to a good nature-loving cause? Think along the lines of the Red campaign for HIV drugs sent to Africa. Donations can also count as tax deductions.

A little help goes a long way, so get out there and go green! You’re welcome to comment and send us your suggestions for future articles on how your business can go green, in and out of the office.

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