When my daughter started Kindergarten, I was shocked by how much waste her little lunches produced. Recently, I was challenged by SC Johnson to attempt #SCJZeroWaste. We did so well that I decided to see if I could reduce office waste in my home.
Let me tell you, reducing the waste in my office was harder than I thought. When I realized how much electricity and paper I was using, it was hard to know where to start. Here are the ways I created a (near) zero waste office.
How To Create A Zero Waste Office
Use less paper and set up e-billing if possible.
I like to print out invoices to have on file for everything, which quickly adds up. Instead of printing out a full page for each invoice, I have started a simple spreadsheet where I can put multiple, similar invoices together. For example Client A has a sheet just dedicated to them, with space for the invoice number, date, notes, amount received and amount set aside for taxes. I still have an electronic copy of the invoice, but by consolidating many invoices on one sheet I print a lot less. Plus, I have a nice sheet for my taxes with all the pertinent information. I also set up e-billing to reduce paper usage.
Buy sustainable products.
I started looking for sustainable products to replace my current products when they run out. When I could not find sustainable products, I looked for companies with environmental policies and initiatives. The impact may not be as direct, but by supporting companies that care about the environment, I will help the overall mission.
When I had to replace my office chair I went on local buy/sell Facebook groups to see if someone had one they no longer needed. Not only was I able to reuse an item that would otherwise go to the landfill, I also saved some money.
I was not able to get a zero waste home office, but I am recycling most of what remains. Did you know that you can recycle more than just paper and plastic? You can also recycle your e-waste. In Canada, SC Johnson responsibly resells or recycles 100 per cent of its e-waste and surplus IT equipment, including hardware. There are also e-waste recycling centres for households as well. No need to throw out that broken monitor.
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Disclosure: I am part of the PTPA Brand Ambassador Program with SC Johnson and I received Compensation as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own.