Three Ways to Make Your Home Office Greener
With the pandemic bringing a change to our working arrangements, professionals transitioning to working from home have had the freedom to set up their office. For many people, this has given them the ability to customize their work environment to suit their individual tastes and needs. But this newfound freedom to design your own space also presents a clear opportunity to play your part in the fight against climate change.
If you’re passionate about the environment, there are many different ways to fit your green credentials from the comfort of your home office. Here are three things you can do to make your WFH space work for the environment.
The carbon footprint of your home office will be affected by many different factors such as lighting, heating and the waste you produce. But did you know that your internet usage can also negatively impact your WFH footprint? As indicated in this guide to the environmental impact of SMEssomething as simple as sending an email can produce 4 grams of carbon, up to 50 grams if you add a large attachment.
While you may not have paid attention to the finer nuances of energy consumption in a shared office space, at home you’ll probably want to do everything you can to reduce your emissions. If so, try adopting more environmentally friendly practices when using the Internet. These can include closing tabs when not in use, unsubscribing from unwanted emails, or using an eco-friendly search engine such as Ecosia.
Reduce, reuse, recycle
As tempting as it may be to work every day from the bed or couch, it’s probably not conducive to a productive work day. Particularly if you’re set to work from home for the longer term, it’s essential that you invest in the right office furniture that will help you maintain healthy habits outside of the office.
Buying recycled chairs or desks that are still in good working order is not only a great way to create a more eco-friendly space, but you can even save money in the process. At the end of their use, or if you return to the office permanently, be sure to recycle, sell or recycle your furniture whenever possible, to prevent it from ending up in the landfill.
If you decide to buy new equipment for your office, be sure to check its green credentials and make sure it has been produced in a sustainable way. Eco-friendly office furniture will usually be made from sustainable/recycled materials, so with a little research you can be sure to fill your office with furniture that looks good and feels good.
To make your office truly eco-friendly, you’ll need to tackle the waste issue. Business waste comes in all forms, from paper to food to everyday items. As such, it’s important to know how to properly dispose of these different types to minimize the environmental impact of your office.
In addition to the physical waste you create, you also need to think about how you manage your energy waste. Working from home invariably means you’ll need to use more energy to power your daily life, but making energy-efficient choices doesn’t mean your bills or carbon footprint has to go up. Simple things like sitting near a window to use natural light means there will be less need for artificial lighting during the day. You should also be sure to turn off your devices such as laptops or screens after the working day, to avoid any phantom energy loss.
In summary, as we’ve discovered, you don’t have to go through major renovations to create a more eco-friendly work environment. However, if you’re going to be spending more of your working week from home for the foreseeable future, you can consider ways to take it to the next level.
This could include installing renewable energy sources such as solar panels to generate your own electricity, or modifying your windows or insulation to be more energy efficient. Whatever changes you make, big or small, will all have a positive impact on your carbon footprint and the wider environment. Start by making a change today and the planet will feel the positive effects for years to come.