3 Sustainability Office Tips For Earth Day 2018
April 20, 2018
As Earth Day 2018 approaches on Sunday April 22, 2018, it’s important to start considering how we can promote sustainability in the office, or the workplace. Most people spend a third of their weekday working from 9-5, and the environmental impacts we cause can seem out of our control. However, small habit changes in millions of small businesses can have a big impact. At QMC, we call this Sustainability Through Accountability. Here are 3 sustainability tips for Earth Day 2018.
Track Energy Usage
If you haven’t already, installing submeters to track and measure usage are a great way to understand your consumption patterns. Perhaps air conditioning runs over the weekend at your new building because someone forgot to set weekends to ‘off’, or the someone leaves the tap running in the washroom after washing their hands. Tracking your usage would allow you to see this wastage and eliminate it.
An awesome byproduct of tracking your energy usage is the ability to identify small issues before they become big problems. For instance, if you install water submeters, and even without Joe leaving the tap running in the washroom, you notice a consistent level of water use, even when no one is in the building. That can point to water leaks in your piping behind drywall, which can lead to cheaper repairs of one pipe, instead of replacing rotten wood and removing black mold.
Carpool or Bike to Work
With gas potentially rising to $2 per litre, it might help to start considering carpooling. With less cars on the road, your early commute would be quicker, with positives for the planet too: Less carbon emissions can reduce the amount of greenhouse gasses (GHG) in the air, reducing the global warming we are currently experiencing.
Removing the car altogether and riding a bike to work can have huge benefits for your body. Most people sit in front of their computer screens for 8 hours out of the day, so the exercise can help boost energy levels. You can reduce your carbon footprint by one pound for every mile you do not drive.
Reusable Products Over Single-use
Single-use stir sticks, plastic utensils, paper cups. All these products have one thing in common: their disposability. While it’s convenient to use a stir stick one time for your coffee, you can achieve the same thing with a metal fork while you’re already in the work kitchen. Ceramic cups can last infinitely longer than the 25 paper cups you’ve thrown away in the past week, or maybe even day.
Small Changes, Big Results for Earth Day 2018
Similar to the starfish story of old, if one person makes a change, multiplied by 7 billion, that would already change our definition of small.