- One big thing I’m working on
- One thing I’m going to change
- One big, "what if"
Today, Nicole proposed a really big "what if" for our team — calculate the energy savings we could realize if we each worked from home just one day a week.
Many of us work from home from time to time, to focus on a project or figure out a problem, or just change up the pace to re-invigorate our energy. But, we’ve been thinking about how this can really impact our overall energy consumption and jump-start our own environmentally conscious changes.
This turned into a great discussion this morning. We’re all obsessed with "going green" and being not only good corporate citizens, but also how we can grow as individuals. We talked about how working from home can save energy: not driving to the office, not starting up the computers in the office, eating the food that’s already in our fridges.
But that’s not where it stopped.
We talked about social media and how we can use it to encourage others to at least think about the little ways to use less energy. Maybe not everyone can work from home, but we have experimented with turning off the overhead lights in the summer, and playing with the temperature in the building. And the big "what if" from Nicole was, "what if we use all the methods of communication available to us to talk about this constantly?" The more it’s on our minds, the more improvements we will make.
So, we’re talking. Some of us have made changes already. Some of us are still mulling over what more we can do. Here’s just a sample:
Kriste unplugs her cell phone chargers after they are done being used.
Cora had her kitchen re-done a few months ago and she made it a point to buy all Energy Star appliances.
Matt stopped using Styrofoam coffee cups, and is now the evangelist for ceramic mugs in the office.
Kelly turns off Clayton’s computer monitor every evening, since he forgets. But seriously, she’s been reading up on the impact of ditching her SUV for a greener vehicle. Unfortunately, there’s lots of good reasons not to stuff it into a landfill until it’s useful life is up. But, then, look out! She’ll be saving that gas money!
Clayton and Jen R carpool to work. Some people are recommending Jen for sainthood. But, I’m with Jen – I enjoy Clayton’s rants, too!
Courtney is today’s queen of green, because her list is so long:
- Changed all of the light bulbs in her house to the energy efficient ones
- Keeps her heat at 68 degrees during winter instead of 70 degrees
- Keep her air conditioning at 72 degrees in summer instead of 68 degrees (She only turns it on when it’s really hot outside)
- Stopped using brown lunch bags and throwing them away – now using and re-using plastic bags from grocery stores
- No longer purchasing bottled water; she uses a Brita and fills re-usable cups
- Doesn’t print presentations at work; using only Powerpoint presentations or overheads
Corey came in with some creative recycling ideas. Did you know that plastic utensils can be recycled? Sure! Same with CDs and DVDs. She also recommends finding the closest recycling center that accepts batteries (do a local web search to find the one closest to you). She has also learned 25 ways to recycle old jeans.
Finally, Corey recommends learning more about recycling. It’s not just for newspapers and plastic jugs. Here’s her list of things you never thought to recycle.