Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Tips for the Green Higher Ed Workplace_Shifting to Green Behaviors

I was reading recently about Green Workplace Tips and here is a Green Workplace Checklist to use in your office whether it's just yourself or a work "Green Team" or something in between. I found it originally at the University of Vermont's website in it's sustainability area. It's tilted to the higher education crowd but many of the tips are applicable to businesses of all shapes and sizes.

The focus is on small and larger actions which can be taken by individuals, work teams and whole offices. It's not really metric based but it has lots of well organized suggestions and offers a road map of sorts with links to additional information to check out at the end.

It also lists the "Top 5 Actions you can take in your workplace". Why not start there and then tackle the comprehensive checklist. It is set up to assess where you are today and then future goals to accomplish.

The biggest thing I think you can personally do, which admittedly I can do a better job too, is carpooling to work or to school. Transportation related energy use and the related carbon footprint is one of the largest problem areas and sometimes one of the easiest to fix. Depending on where you live and how far away work is there may be other healthier choices such as walking, biking, razoring or skateboarding, taking the bus or using a campus shuttle bus system. Oh yeah, cutting down on air travel is also an obvious but sometimes harder behavior to change. It's nice to visit family or attend interesting conferences. As an alternative consider video conferencing, Skyping (is that a verb now?) or some online cloud computing meeting software instead. There are numerous virtual meeting choices of varying sophistication available now making it easier then ever before.

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