When you know all about the terrible things plastic does to innocent sea creatures and the fact that it basically never goes away, you become conscious about using plastic utensils or reducing energy. However, if you’re disconnected from the world of sustainability and haven’t learned much about plastics or just avoid anything related to environmental doom and gloom on a regular basis, it’s easy to not think about how to save energy and reduce waste.
During my internship, I tried to make daily life in the office a little greener. Our company trademark color is green, so it’s an easy tie in and I even used the slogan “don’t just wear green, be green” in one of the tips. It’s hard to inform people on how to change their ways without making them feel as if you’re scolding them. Sure I can tell someone, “don’t use that plastic knife, it’s bad for the environment,” but if they’ve been working all day and are just trying to cut into the leftover dinner they brought for lunch, they really aren’t in the mood to be lectured.
I made a sign and posted it in the office kitchen as just a friendly reminder of how people can do their part. These tips are also incorporated into the sessions I created for teaching the home office staff about sustainable tourism, just as a reminder on how to make travel and daily life better.
I did have a people ask me about the sign. I always use reusable utensils that I wash and keep at work. It’s positive to see that some of the office staff has started to do the same. A lot of people were happy to tell me that they do carpool to work, something that is especially beneficial for those that live up to an hour away.
Another positive improvement that has come from this “Be Green” campaign is more recycling in the office. Even though we don’t a formalized recycling program in the office, people have started to question why and hopefully one will be implemented soon. There is a paper-recycling bin and many people now take their extra office papers to this bin instead of putting them in their regular trash cans.
Below are the tips from the Be Green campaign:
- Fill it up: Skip the bottled water and use a refillable water bottle at work. There’s always cold, filtered water in the kitchen for you to fill it up with!
- Bring your lunch: Reduce waste by packing your lunch with reusable utensils and Tupperware containers. Hey, it’ll even save you money!
- Travel Green: Find members of the Home Office Team who live near you and carpool to work. This will also help save you money and make your commute more fun!
- Go Dark: Turn off the lights when you leave and remember to shut down your computer when leaving for the day.
- Recycle paper: Not only can you help out by printing less documents, but also remember to recycle your leftover papers in the bin by the main printer.
- Start small: Every little bit helps to make the planet a better place. Don’t just wear green, be green!