Trash fills up landfills, and landfills can let toxins seep into the ground and into water systems. Trash also stinks, and if you live anywhere near a landfill you know how bad it can stink, especially on a warm day or after a big rain. It releases gasses into the air, as well, that can sometimes make it difficult to breathe.
There’s no way around it, humans make trash. However, you can work to be a greener business and do your part in adding less to the landfills out there. It takes some work, but there are ways to reduce, reuse, and recycle. Here are some tips.
Set up recycling bins in the break room and have a meeting to make sure that all of your employees understand their purpose. You need to make sure that you do a little research on the recycling plan your trash company offers. You may need to keep paper recyclables separate from plastics, and you might not be able to recycle shiny paper (like that used in magazines).
Take In Returnables
Have a separate container where employees can deposit cans and bottles that can actually be returned if you live in a state that has returnables. You could use the cash from returnables to put in a fund to use for snacks at meetings or any number of other plans (maybe as a payout for an employee of the month, to push your workers to try even harder and be even more productive with a cash bonus on the line).
Ban Plastic Bags
Try banning plastic bags from your business. Cut back on the amount of trash bags your office uses in small trash cans by reusing plastic grocery bags for these cans. Have people bring their lunches in using reusable cloth bags. Suggest they use reusable food containers instead of plastic baggies.
Reuse everything that you possibly can reuse and teach your employees to do the same. In fact, you can even get them to make their food scraps last longer by starting a mini garden in the breakroom growing your own lettuce and onions. Wash plastic silverware and reuse it until it breaks, rinse out plastic sandwich bags, and try to use washable plates instead!
If you want to cut down on trash in your office consider starting a crafting group, or inquiring if any of your employees are crafters. Crafters are often great at turning trash into treasures. You may find someone willing to take all those old magazines home and turn them into amazing art pieces they can bring back and decorate the office with.
As a business, you owe it to your community to be a leader in the world of green living. Show individuals that if a business can be all about the environment then they can do it too!