My daughter's kindy has a "zero waste" policy for packed lunches. Think reusable containers and nude food, and wave goodbye to good old cling-film. There are some innovative companies harnessing the "reduce, reuse, recycle" mantra and I suppose we could all do our bit for the planet.
Here are five easy ways to go green during your work week.
Optimise energy output
Computers have energy-saving settings so if they're not in use, they don't use too much power. Don't forget to properly shut down when you leave for the day, it may take an extra few minutes to log on in the morning, but it's better for your computer, and better for the planet. Unplug equipment such as printers and scanners that are only used occasionally, and only switch on lights in spaces you are using.
More time online
The more you do online, the less paper you need. Recycled paper is better to use than non-recycled, but no paper is the greenest of all. Keep files on computers instead of in file cabinets, and send emails instead paper notes and letters.
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Many companies are realising the benefits in allowing employees to work from home. And why not, it's good for business, employees and the environment. Less commuting has to be a good thing and, if you have to go into the office, consider working four 10-hour days, instead of five 8-hour days - this cuts time spent on commuting by 20%.
Bringing your lunch to work in reusable containers is certainly better for the planet than buying takeaways in disposable packaging. However, if you absolutely can't resist that tray of sushi, why not get together with your co-workers and place a large order, then share it out using office plates and utensils?
Some paper use can't be avoided, so use recycled paper and envelopes. Nowadays you can also buy pens and pencils made from recycled materials, and refillable pens and markers. Biodegradable soaps and recycled paper or cloth towels in the bathroom and kitchen are greener options.