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10 Little Known Ways To “Go Green” At The Office

Posted: May 06th, 2013 in ,,

Green Printing

As the protection of the environment becomes increasingly important in the conscience of New Yorkers, more and more businesses in the Big Apple are attempting to “go green” as both a way to reduce office expenditures by implementing sustainable business practice as well as differentiate themselves from the competitors who might be less eco-friendly. However, you don’t have to make Newsweek’s Greenest Companies list in order to show others how environmentally conscious your business is if you follow the tried and true trilogy of “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” around the office. To help you along, here are 10 often overlooked tips New York businesses can follow that are not only good for the environment but will save a lot of money if practiced .

1.   Only used commercial printers that utilize digital printing as this technology produces less chemical waste and VOCs (i.e. Volatile Organic Compounds), requires less electricity to run than offset printing and can use 100% non-toxic ink toner. Frequently known as “NYC Green Printing”, digital technology is especially cost-effective for short run projects such as business cards, flyers, booklets, etc.

2.   Have your business website use an eco-friendly web hosting company that either uses renewable energy or takes part in buying carbon offsets or renewable energy certificates as a way of reducing the environmental footprint of their servers and infrastructure.

3.  Practice “daylighting” around the office which is a method of making your office cooler in the summer and warmer in winter, thereby saving electricity as well as heating oil/gas. This natural climate-control technique involves opening up the shades to let as much sunshine in during cold months while keeping the shades closed during the warmer months.

4.   Utilize new technologies that requires less energy such as video conferencing (which saves employees on traveling back and forth to meetings) or purchasing office printers that use solid ink or Emulsion Aggregate (EA) toners as they produce up to 90% less waste when compared to older color laser printers. These types of printers will also save money in the long run as they have a lower cost of ownership over the life of the machine.

5.   In addition to office printers, replace other outdated appliances around the office with newer, more environmentally friendly counterparts. One easy way to do this is to choose machines that have a favorable Energy Star rating. Although they may seem more expensive at first, remember that they will save you money in the long run by not using as much electricity to operate.

6.   Schedule a yearly maintenance checkup of your office bathrooms for leaking faucets and low flow toilets, check your office’s HVAC system to make sure it’s operating efficiently, and check any other large machines such as refrigerators, dishwashers, printers, etc. After all, the better a machine is working more efficiently will use electricity.

7.   Contact your local utility to see if your building qualifies for an energy audit and if not, talk to your landlord about getting one anyway. They’re usually free of charge and the US Department of Energy (DOE) estimates that the average customer can save up to 20% on their heating and cooling bills by performing such routine tasks as ceiling leaks and cracks around your office windows and doors, something a energy audit will find out.

8.  Developing a plan by which employees can telecommute one day per week as keeping your people off the road helps the environment. Rotating employees this way also saves needing to get more office space as having 20% of your employees not in the office on any given day will save you money on overhead.

9.  Make sure to turn off and when possible unplug equipment when the office is closed overnight and/or on weekends and holidays. Most of us don’t realize that power is still being used (albeit in a small amount) when an electronic device is turned off/in standby mode but still plugged in to a wall socket. Sometimes known as “outputting”, in this wasting of energy is estimated by the US DOE to cost the average American an extra 10% on their electricity bill.

10.  Instigate a search for suppliers and services that are closer in proximity to your place of business as the further you or you’re suppliers have to travel, the more energy is wasted going back and forth. This is especially true if you go out for or receive supplies twice a week or more.

By simply following the 10 tips above, NYC businesses can cut hundreds if not thousands of dollars off their electric bills while improving their image in the minds of Eco-conscious consumers. You if you don’t follow each of these 10 tips perfectly all the time, make sure to let your customers know about your efforts by creating an environmental mission statement or section on your website.

Influence Graphics implements “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” by reusing cardboard boxes for deliveries back to customers, recycling all our paper trimmings, using mass transit for many of our messenger deliveries and by printing on recycled paper.  We want to be your green printing company in New York City!

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