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Recycling in the workplace

It’s common knowledge that recycling has far reaching benefits when it comes to tackling climate change. Implementing recycling programs within your company or office can help people to make a larger impact than their individual efforts at home. Here are some of the ways you can start recycling in the workplace. 

Ensure office recycling is a collective effort

Effective recycling in the workplace can only happen when everyone is on the same page. Although even one or two people recycling helps the environment, you are more likely to stick to the office recycling regime if others around you are and you can hold each other accountable. 

Taking suggestions from colleagues on how your workplace could encourage more recycling is a good place to start as it will make it feel more like a team effort. Also, ensuring that everyone is aware of the impact recycling has can make them more likely to continue doing so. 

This could involve researching how much waste your business or office produces that could be recycled, or more general facts such as:

  • Recycling 1 can saves enough energy to power a television for 3 hours
  • It takes 70% less energy to recycle paper than it does to make it from scratch
  • 79% of plastic ever created has now been put into our environment by way of landfills and oceans.

Promote using reusable items

One way to eliminate waste is to reduce the amount that you use, and this could come from promoting the use of reusable items within the workplace. For example, switching out plastic cups for glass cups or ceramic mugs  for visitors to use- not only will this cut down on plastic usage but it could also give a better impression of your company. 

Another large factor in excess plastic waste is single use plastic bottles. By encouraging your employees to either reuse their plastic bottles more than once or, even better, switch to a reusable water bottle, this could drastically reduce the amount of plastic waste your office produces. 

Why not get the ball rolling by designing branded water bottles for your staff to purchase, or even create a scheme for them to be provided for staff?

Separate recycling bin

Putting in a visual reminder to recycle in the office is a great way to keep your staff on track with recycling in a workplace more. This can be done by something as simple and practical as putting in a recycling bin where people can see it. 

Another aspect of this, is removing personal bins from each desk- this deters people from creating excess waste as they have to physically move to put it in the bin, and if the waste bin is put right next to the recycling then it will serve as a good reminder to recycle instead of throwing everything away. It may also have an added benefit of highlighting people’s snacking habits at work, prompting healthier habits to form.

When changing your waste and recycling bins, ensure that any cleaners or staff who empty these bins are made aware of the changes that are being put in place. This can avoid mix ups later down the line and ensure that the recycling is being put in the appropriate place, and not the general waste bin. 

Go paperless

As mentioned before, reducing the amount you need to throw away or recycle is overall better for the environment. Many businesses have taken the stance of going paperless in their offices to reduce the amount of paper waste they produce- helping the environment while keeping their expenditure on printer paper down. If a document can be signed electronically and stored on a server to keep it safe, why not do that instead of printing many pages and then having to store the physical copy in the office? Save space, money and unnecessary waste. 

For more information on keeping a clean office, contact a member of the team today!