Business,  Health

Reducing Personal and Business Waste

Environmental problems seem to get worse and worse each year. Recycling is a significant factor, and while it is a lot higher than a few years ago, at 32%, we can do much better. Reducing personal and business waste is a top priority. Yet may find it challenging to implement. But it’s easy when you know-how. Further to recycling, energy efficiency plays a significant role in the environment. Paper reduction is vital, and single-use plastics kill marine life in record numbers. 

You can help your business reach its goals with environmental disclosure via the Carbon Disclosure Project.

Image Courtesy of Pixabay

Recycle Everything

You’ve probably heard of this one for years, but you really should recycle everything you can. In a standard office, paper alone accounts for 70% of waste. Paper is highly recyclable, so don’t throw it in the garbage. Trash pre-sorting is an excellent way to maximise recycling efficiency. All you need to do is use separate bins for different waste types. For example, one bin for paper, another for glass and another for recyclable metals such as drinks cans.

Use Recycled Stuff

You can further increase your contribution to the recycling cycle by using products and materials that are already recycled. For example, if you need to use paper for your business, use only reclaimed parchment. Additionally, you could purchase repurposed materials or even second electronics such as PC keyboards, phones and computers. If you aren’t fussy about clothing, the preloved clothing industry is booming with apps like Vinted and good cause charity stores. 

Be Energy Aware

Your home and your business rely on electricity. That’s just a simple fact of the modern world. Yet you don’t need to waste energy just because it is there. And with current energy prices at the highest in history (especially in the UK), you can save some money by using only what you need. You can save energy with some simple changes:

  • Don’t leave devices on standby overnight.
  • Install LED light bulbs.
  • Connect appliances to energy-saving sockets.
  • Purchase efficient appliances.
  • Turn down your thermostat a little.
  • Wash clothes at a lower temperature.

These small changes will save a small amount of money alone. But together, they can make a significant impact on your energy consumption and, therefore, costs.

Consider the Paperless Office

Further to reducing paper wastage, you may want to consider the paperless office. Bill Gates is the original advocate for this, and it’s one of the main reasons he created Microsoft Office programs. Essentially, you should use paper only when it’s absolutely necessary. Modern technology makes this very easy. For example, document apps support collaboration, email is a vital communication tool, and video conferencing is easier than ever with Zoom, Skype and Teams.

Ban Single-Use Items

One of the most significant contributors to the plastic epidemic is single-use items. Most of these items, such as cutlery, water bottles, food containers and dog poop bags, are made of microplastics which kill marine life in astounding numbers. There is currently more than 5 trillion pieces of microplastic in our oceans, and the facts are shocking:

  • 1 million seabirds die annually from microplastics
  • 100,000 marine animals also die
  • 100% of baby sea turtles are found with plastic in their stomach

You can help with this concerning issue by making small changes. For example, use reusable water bottles, buy from vendors who use only paper food containers and switch to biodegradable dog poop bags. Finally, most large corporations are in the process of or have already switched to sustainable and harmless packaging. McDonald’s is one such example.