Facilities Management: How do you Bring Sustainability into the Workplace?
Sustainability is the word on many people’s lips in 2022. Climate targets are being set left, right, and centre at local, national, and international levels.
It is unlikely that the company you work for does not already have a green initiative nowadays. But, if they do not, or it is not to your satisfaction then there are many ways in which you can begin the process of bringing sustainability into the workplace.
One of the first things that many people will remember growing up with and learning about the environment is the phrase ‘Reduce, Reuse, Recycle’. It is a simple, yet effective phrase and it is a good starting point when trying to get your place of work to go green.
You can start with just putting out an extra bin beside the regular rubbish bin just for recyclable material. A word of caution, however. Some people still do not know what can and can’t be recycled and if unrecyclable materials make their way into the recycling bin, it will create a headache and a good deal of sorting for you to do later on. Some signage above these bins highlighting what is and what isn’t recycling may help to prevent this.
This can work as a positive impact on the office in a number of ways.
Most importantly, plants are a key part of the carbon dioxide – oxygen cycle. Having more greenery around the office will help strengthen this process. Even if it is just in a minor way. In the journey to sustainability, every small step can help to go a long way.
An added bonus is a more vibrant and colourful working space. Just make sure to keep them well-watered and with adequate access to sunlight!
Reduce Energy Consumption
Again, this really just comes down to everyone making an effort. So much energy is wasted in workplaces in areas that are not necessary and are easy to prevent.
When leaving a room, make sure that all non-essential plug outlets are disconnected and switched. For example, you will obviously keep the fridge running all the time, otherwise, you might have some very angry colleagues asking about their spoilt lunch. But if there are appliances such as kettles or microwaves that are not in use, they can be plugged out and the plug switched off.
Also, when leaving a room, turning the lights off behind you can save even the smallest bit of energy. You don’t know the next time someone will enter that room. You could be leaving them all night. Using energy-conserving bulbs is always a good measure to take also.
An added benefit to these measures is that, depending on your company’s plan, you could be saving money while making a sustainable difference.
Introduce a Sustainable Transport Incentive
These are becoming more and more common in offices across the globe. Many companies now have a cycle-to-work scheme whereby an employer will purchase a bicycle for their employee and have them pay it off little by little, meanwhile the employee is immediately making their commute more environmentally friendly.
Some employers will also offer reimbursement of the costs of taking public transport to work, often paid back annually. This becomes a nice extra windfall for the employee when the time comes for repayment.
These are just some ways that you can get your workplace on the path to a more sustainable and environmentally friendly future.
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