Trash Talk: Get Rid Of Workplace Waste

Did you know the average Aussie produces 2,100 kg of waste a year and that Australia is one of the most wasteful countries in the developed world?  It seems our household waste habits need a lot of work but so do our commercial waste practices.

Commercial waste sends around round 7 million tonnes to landfill each year.

That’s why businesses and workers need to clean up their act when it comes to waste and have better waste management practices. It makes sense as it helps our environment, saves your business dollars and provides a real competitive advantage.

The good news is caring for our environment is easy. Here are five ways to waste less in the workplace:

Power down.

An effortless way to reduce pollutant waste is to switch off equipment and computers, especially during long weekends and holiday periods.

Another great way to reduce pollution is to get out of the car! Try carpooling with workmates when travelling to meetings or going out for lunch. An even better option is to walk (you’ll help both the environment and your health).

Recycle more.

Amazingly, nearly everything inside our workplaces is recyclable! It’s worth looking beyond recycling paper and cardboard. Planet Ark provides a great list of how to recycle everything from batteries and mobile phones to light globes and e-waste.

Practice ‘green’ giving.

Are you doing a cupboard cleanout or updating your workspaces? Chances are you’ll have tons of items, like office stationery, promotional samples and other bric-a-brac, destined for the bin. Try contacting charities, like Givit, to take your unwanted items and donate it to people in need.

Ease up on plastics.

Avoid disposable plastic cutlery and cups in the workplace. Provide glassware, mugs and ‘real’ cutlery instead—because plastic cutlery is too flimsy for eating anyway!

You can also supply staff with reusable (company-branded for extra exposure) canvas shopping bags for their lunchtime grocery trips. 

Control catering.

Sadly, Aussies chuck out $8 billion worth of food each year. A great way to stop the waste is to avoid over-catering for work events. Of course, food rescue charities, like OzHarvest, happily collect surplus food, but it’s best not to have the excess in the first place.

While you’re at it, why not cut down on take-away lunches? Bring in a healthy meal in a reusable container instead. Not only is it one less plastic container in the bin, but also fewer calories to burn.

We may be producing tons of trash during all those hours spent at work, but there are lots of ways to reduce waste. Ultimately, only one statistic really matters: We’ve got one planet. So, let’s all play our part in caring for it.