Recycling typical office goods like paper waste, aluminum cans, and plastic bottles reduces the need for new materials to be manufactured. This aids in the reduction of energy and resource consumption connected with material extraction and generation operations.
Some of the main reasons to recycle are:
- To reduce landfill waste
- To help the environment
- To create jobs
- To save energy, water, trees and other resources
- To save money on office expenses
If you are looking into ways to better your office’s ecological awareness and lower its carbon footprint, here are some ways to implement an office recycling program. You can also get Bin Rental Richmond to get your office clean.
Rather than printing hard copies of documents, make it a practice to save them on your computer. When possible, send materials by email. Use e-billing and online document sharing tools to perform your banking and share documents.
Save paper by printing two-sided documents when you need a hard copy. Save ink by using a small font on documents. Set the printer for its “draft” ink savings setting. You can also use the backs of discarded papers as note pads.
Purchase Recycled Materials
You can buy a variety of goods made from recycled materials for use in your office, including but not limited to:
- 100% post-consumer reams of paper
- Recyclable furniture and protective floor mats
- Post-It notes
- Recyclable pens and pencils made with cardboard, wood and newspaper
- Clipboards with 100% recyclable wood
- Clear tape made of recyclable contents
- Whiteboards with refillable 100% aluminium markers
- Manilla mailing envelopes
- Recycled paper clips to replace staples
Create Recycling Bins
Plastic, steel, paper, corrugated paper, solid fibre boxes, and industrial paperboard are all recyclable business products, according to the EPA.
Place paper recycling bins near workstation clusters and coffee machines. Create a recycling station for food packaging, metals, and acceptable plastics in the company’s kitchen or break room.
Train Your Employees
You might have implemented a recycling program but is it being used?
Make it simple for your employees to participate and demonstrate the advantages of recycling. The following are some ideas for educating staff about your office recycling program:
- Create a “green team”
- Hold a Recycling Challenge
- Place your recycling bins and signage in prominent locations
- Create a “recyclable” supply room in your office where employees can place items they no longer need or use, and pick up items they need
- Offer recognition levels for recycling achievements
- Develop a monthly recycling goal; change the goal each month
- Make a list of what types of items can be recycled. If you don’t know whether an item can be recycled, use a “recyclepedia.”
- Create recycling contests with rewards
- Group bins and have separates for each material type
- Have employees participate in or volunteer for an offsite recycling event
Almost everything in the office can be recycled, yet many of these items cannot be placed in the recycling container. They must be transported to an e-waste recycling facility or returned to the maker in some situations. Some of these items are:
- Electronics: Computers, printers, copiers, tablets, cellphones, external hard drives, USB cords, monitors, and other items with a cord or plug can be recycled or given at an e-waste center.
- Fluorescent bulbs should not be thrown out since they contain mercury.
- Toner cartridges and printer ribbons can usually be recycled or refilled by returning them to the manufacturer.
- Batteries include recyclable metals, but they also contain compounds that are harmful to the environment.
- Cell phones, even if they are out of date, are still valuable. Cell phones can be mailed back to the manufacturer or donated to a charitable organization as part of a fundraising initiative. Otherwise, it can be recycled at an e-waste facility.
- CDs and DVDs are becoming obsolete as we increasingly rely on the cloud for our papers. They cannot be thrown away or recycled because they contain #7 polycarbonate plastic, which can generate harmful fumes when burned.