Getting a Green Office Makeover: Start Small!

Posted by: Mitchell H. Kirsch 0 comments

You can’t see it from the outside, but the Empire State Building is transforming itself into an eco-friendly building, thanks to a $20 million green office makeover that aims to cut its energy consumption by almost 40%.

By current estimates, its transformation into a green office will reduce the Empire State Building’s annual CO2 emissions by some 105,000 metric tons.

That’s a major step, considering that the tower’s emerald lights on St. Patrick’s day were about as green as it normally got before now!

There’s a simple objective behind any green office makeover, even one as expansive as the Empire State Building’s: reduce the organization’s impact on the environment. Awareness is job number one – most organizations aren’t even conscious of their massive footprint on Mother Earth.

“We depend on paper, plastic and other materials to communicate and transmit goods,” says Annex Brands marketing VP Steve Goble. “Unfortunately, it’s all too easy to lose sight of the amount of resources we use when completing these tasks, but by taking a few simple steps, people can greatly reduce excess waste.”

Taking steps to a green office could be as simple as recycling paper, using electronics with the Energy Star power feature, switching appliances off at the power source (instead of letting them “sleep”, draining even more energy), and installing eco-friendly office lighting.    (read more)

It’s the tiny things that make a difference, says Max Thompson, director of New Zealand project manager HamiltonThomson. “Apart from saving money, our clients find the additional benefit of healthy staff pays dividends to the company,” Thompson says.

Small steps are a great start to going green. By shrinking your default font size on your word processing software, for example, you can cram more words onto one sheet of paper and reduce the number of printouts you make.

Oh, and that sheet of paper you’re printing your smaller text on? Make sure it’s recycled; print on the blank side of previously-used paper.

Down the line, you can expand your green office makeover to your delivery materials –, for example, recycles all the materials it can, and uses the rest to as packing material to ship its product.

So don’t be intimidated by the scale and cost of the Empire State Building’s eco-friendlier re-do. You don’t need $20 million to get the green office you want. For much less, you can go green and still have an appreciable impact on your carbon footprint and your bottom line.

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