How to Recycle at Work

Recycling at home is easier to implement because there are only a few people to manage. Recycling at work, however, takes more effort and may even require more of an enabling approach. Consider some necessary steps if you wish to get more people to recycle at work.


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    Consider inviting a sanitation department staff member to come in and discuss the benefits of recycling. Informing employees of the significance of recycling and offering some recycling tips may motivate them to take part in the effort.
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    Analyze the different areas of the company's production, and find ways to increase the recycling options at work. Post notices in appropriate locations informing employees of the various items they should be recycling, such as paper, cardboard, toner cartridges, soda bottles and aluminum cans.
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    Establish a policy to print only in black and white draft mode, unless it is essential that the material needs to be in color to accomplish its objective. Ask that employees print on both sides of the copy paper and that the back side of used documents be reused as scrap paper. Purchase lighter stock with higher recycled content, and opt for re-manufactured cartridges.
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    Choose to go paperless whenever possible by taking advantage of email and online resources. If you want to promote recycling at work, you need to lead by example. Therefore, post employee notices online or email notices directly to employees. Instead of printing brochures, newsletters, and policy manuals, send them out as .pdf files so that employees can print them only if they want to.
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    Make it easy for everyone to recycle. Arrange for recycle bins for various materials to be delivered to your work. Accommodate the recycling needs of your particular business, including plain paper, cardboard, glass and plastic. Make sure that they are placed around your work area in locations that are convenient. If you want more people to recycle, you have to make it an option whenever you can.
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    Purchase a shredder, and place it near the copier so that employees can recycle their paper. Arrange to have the shredder emptied on a regular basis. Depending on what you are shredding, consider using the shredded paper as packing material.
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    Note all the unwanted magazines and junk mail that the company receives, and call companies to cancel subscriptions. Oftentimes, magazine companies will send more than 1 copy of a particular trade magazine. If you want the magazine but don't need 6 copies, call the company, and ask that they send just 1 copy. Recycle whatever comes in, in the meantime.
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    Stock the kitchen area with cups, plates, and silverware so that employees are not using paper and plastic items. Or ask that employees bring in their own. Opt for recycled napkins, compostable paper plates, and corn cups at office functions.

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Categories: Reduce Recycle and Reuse