Consumption at Work
Commercial Sector Consumption
Where businesses purchase goods for their diverse operations and efforts, over-consumption is a sustainability issue of central concern, as it is directly linked to challenges of over-extraction of natural resources, their processing, and waste.
Consumption by the commercial sector and its impact vastly outweighs that of residential homes, presenting tremendous potential for businesses to take on leadership roles in influencing market trends and educating employees on pro-environmental consumption habits.
Durables & Incentives
Providing employees with durable dishware and durable replacements for to-go beverages can discourage consuming single-use items. Have a coffee maker at work? Use a refillable K-Cup filter! Durables are easily incentivized by small rewards and recognition!
A green event is one where little-to-no waste is created during the occasion. Have easy to stack, durable cups and dishware just for these events rather than single-use items. Provide water pitchers rather than bottled water, and create a list of attendees for planning food, amenities, and printing necessary documents.
Set up a space in a common room or central supply area for used office supplies that are in good condition to be reused. This can help save on stationary costs! Make a clear guide that outlines what you want to be put there and what you don’t want.
Choosing what comes into your company is just as important as what comes out. A green purchasing policy is a commitment to buying supplies and materials with high-recycled content, low concentrations of toxics, and certified energy efficient appliances.
- EPA: Greener Products
- EPA: Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines
- City of Portland: Sustainable Procurement
- City of Seattle: Green Purchasing
Food Waste Stops With Me: Hotel | Kitchen
The result of a collaboration between Oregon Metro and Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association, Hotel | Kitchen is an online tool kit for reducing food waste in restaurants and hotels. Here, purchasing plays a tremendous part in waste prevention.