Top tips for greening your organisation (and maybe even saving money, too!)
Going green is about reducing consumption, re-using to limit wastage, and recycling old into new. Going green can often save you money, something we know most community groups are always on the look-out for. Here are a few suggestions…
Choose refillable products
Many products that you use daily in the office, often at great expense, are available in refillable versions. Reusing containers and casings will reduce landfill AND result in savings for your bottom line.
- Cleaning products (choose green and concentrated);
- Printer / photocopier toner cartridges; and
- Stationary items such as biros, highlighters, whiteboard markers and correction tape.
Think before you print
Printing, while sometimes necessary – is a really wasteful exercise.
You can print more efficiently by following these tips.
- Set double sided or ‘duplex’ as your default printer setting
- Set ‘fast’draft’ or black ink only as default printer settings (how often is colour printing really necessary?)
- SPELLCHECK so that you don’t have to reprint a document because of typos
- Turn scrap paper that has been printed on one side into scribble pads for phone messages etc.
- Shred loose paper for packing fill
Don't let lack of knowledge be an excuse
Friendly reminders (not passive aggressive notes!) can help create a sustainable mindset around your office or meeting place. Stickers, notes and posters can be placed:
- near light switches and office machine, reminding people to turn them off when not in use;
- in kitchen areas to highlight what can and can’t be recycled; and
- on doors and windows, reminding people to keep them closed when airconditioning/heating is on.
Keep the conversation alive
Pull together a collective of like-minded people who are keen on sustainability, reducing costs and improving environmental performance, and put their enthusiasm to use by allowing them to:
- send out regular tips to staff/members via email;
- run competitions to reduce consumption and utilities costs;
- conduct an energy, water or waste assessment;
- hold info sessions and invite guest speakers or show documentaries on environmental topics; and
- set up a system where people can share their ideas, issues and solutions.
Now, you can plan even bigger and better projects with all that money you are saving around the office! And if you have other tips, we'd love to know about them, so we can add them to this page.