How to Lower Energy Costs at Work
Save on Energy Costs and Save the Planet at The Same Time
Energy is a necessary component of modern life but it can get expensive. Lowering energy costs at work will not only allow you to reduce how much money you spend, but it will also help the planet by reducing the expenditure of natural resources. There are a variety of ways to generate electricity – hydro, nuclear, coal and wind to name a few, and while there are pros and cons to all methods, ultimately most techniques emit carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas. If you can cut back on how much energy you use at work you will in turn reduce how many resources are used, how much carbon is emitted and how much money you spend.
Illuminate the Way with Energy Efficient Light Bulbs
Lighting consumes about 18 percent of U.S. produced electricity. One of the most affordable and easy ways to increase efficiency and reduce carbon emissions is to switch to LED and CFL light bulbs as alternatives to incandescent lighting. This minor change will help the planet by using less energy and do wonders for your bottom line without impacting the quality of lighting.
Think Before You Print
The average American uses about 650 pounds of paper annually. Before you print an email or other documents ask yourself if you really need a hardcopy. Printing less will conserve paper, ink or toner and the power the printer uses to get the job done. There are times documents must be printed, but if it isn’t one of those times don’t print it. Save digital files on an accessible local server or cloud server so documents are available to everyone in the office. Using digital files is also more efficient from a work standpoint since everyone will have access to the most up-to-date version.
Make Sure Your Space is Efficient
If you have clogged vents or drafty windows and doors you will lose heat in the winter and cool air in the summer. To resolve this problem clean all vents, make sure weather stripping is intact and all doors securely close. It may also be worth considering who in the office has access to the thermostat. The office should be comfortable for everyone, but anyone who is inclined to crank the heat in the colder months or the AC in the warmer months probably should not have free reign to control the temperature.
Energy Star products Greatly Reduce Energy Consumption
Products are so much more energy efficient today than they were in years past and a great way to determine which products are top energy performers is to check out the Energy Star site. There are a wide range of products that are rated from refrigerators to printers. When you find yourself shopping for a new appliance for the office kitchen or a new computer, look for the Energy Star logo to ensure the item will not guzzle power.
Working from Home Conserves Resources
Depending on the type of work you do, telecommuting could be an option. Telecommuting reduces the energy consumed during the commute and it also conserves resources at the office since for each person working remotely that means there is one less person powering up their computer, using the printer, turning lights on and so forth. Studies have also shown that when employees work from home they tend to be more efficient with their work since there are fewer distractions.
Find the Energy Efficient Methods that Work Best for You
There are so many compelling reasons to reduce your energy consumption at work from lowering your energy expenses to helping the planet. Simply by taking measures like using more efficient light bulbs and appliances, making sure you get the most out of your cooling and heating systems and only using energy and supplies when you need them will ensure you use resources responsibly. You can see results if you only incorporate one of these tips into your workplace, but if you go all in and implement several of these pointers you can see a big return.
What do you do to reduce energy consumption at work? Let us know is the comments!
2-24-14 UPDATE: We were reminded by one of our Facebook Fans that the CFL bulbs contain mercury. LED bulbs are a much more eco-friendly way to utilize energy savings on lighting. If you do use CFL bulbs, please take care to dispose of them properly. We will have a post in the coming weeks on how to dispose CFL bulbs properly.Tagged