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What makes a workplace sustainable?

At 1 Million Women we talk a lot about reducing our carbon footprint at home, but what about at work? Whether or not we like to admit it, in western culture most of our time is spent at our place of work - up to and above 40 hours a week. In fact, a study conducted by the National Sleep Foundation found that 38 percent of those polled worked 50 hours or more per week. Just as it is at home, reducing you environmental impact in the workplace is so much easier than most people think. Especially in today's society with new green technologies and sustinable options. So, what really makes a sustainable, lower-impact workplace? We'll be covering all of these topics in more details through out the month of February to make sure we are giving you the tools to fight dangerous climate change everyday, through the way that we live and the way we spend our money.

Technology

In today's society you'll be hard pressed to find an office that doesn't have some sort of technology in it - but there will always be a sustainable choice and sustainable power options. When purchasing make these aspects your first priory and be sure to do you research on any product you buy. Reducing electricity usage can be as simple as turning the powerpoint off when not in use, which means it will not only reduce your carbon footprint but save you money as well.

Green the commute

By working from home some or all of the time, using information and computer technology including the internet and telephone instead of driving your car to a workplace you can eliminate 40km per week or more of driving to work by teleworking. This mean you can save an estimated CO2 Saving of 32kg per month (384kg per year).

Or if that doesn't float your boat you can also make the switch to public transport for 10km or more every week and save an estimated 8kg per month of C02 pollutions (104kg per year) - it real is that easy!!

Lighting

If you have smart lighting at home, why not see if you can get it installed at your workplace?

Again, it's not only reducing your energy carbon footprint but is also going to save you money. There are smart lights which turn off when employees aren't in the room and lights that turn off if they don't sense movement for an extended period of time. Energy-efficient lighting and turning off lights when leaving the office, meeting rooms, lounge or bathroom make a huge difference.

Green Materials

If you HAVE to use paper, make sure it's recycled paper and envelopes, made using eco-friendly methods.

Did you know pens and pencils can also be made of recycled materials?  You can get refillable pens and markers are preferable to disposable ones. It doesn't just stop there - you can get eco-soaps for the bathrooms and use cloth towels instead of paper towels.

There is so much more we can look at when asking ourselves how we can make an office more sustainable and we will be highlighting them all throughout February - here's some we've already done.

Green jobs for the girls! A guest post by Romilly Madew

How to green your workplace

DIY all-purpose 3 ingredient cleaner for your workplace

And don't forget to take part in our monthly photo a day challenge, this month's theme is (you guessed it) sustainable workplace. You can inform, inspire and motivate each other your amazing sustainable photos and there are great prizes to be won! Play photo a day by clicking here .

JOIN 1 MILLION WOMEN!

Join us in taking practical action on dangerous climate change through the way that we live, the choices we make and the way we spend our money.