Reduce air pollution at work

Last week the Salt Lake Tribune issued a request to Utah businesses to describe the ways our offices are tackling air pollution. Action Utah has witnessed a variety of technologies and programs being utilized around the state to reduce the carbon footprint of businesses and encourage clean air behaviors among employees. Sharing these practices with other Utahns helps more businesses implement carbon emission reductions and facilitate better habits around air quality.

But what if you don’t have any air quality practices in place at your office? There are many emissions reducing measures you can bring to your workplace to be part of the air quality solution in Utah!

WHAT YOU CAN DO

  • Let the Salt Lake Tribune know what your office is doing to reduce emissions by filling out this brief survey form.
  • Implement new emissions reductions measures in your workplace. Not yet reducing emissions at work? Check out the list of suggestions below for how to reduce emissions in the workplace.

Tips on reducing carbon emissions in the workplace

Calculate your Carbon Footprint: However you choose to reduce emissions in your office or business, it helps to start with a measurement of what emissions you are currently producing. Find out more about why measuring emissions matters and use this Carbon Footprint Guide and Carbon Footprint Calculator to get your business’ baseline.

Involve staff: Employees need to understand a company’s environmental policy and goals. For instance, recycling efforts can be undermined by staff not knowing what goes in which bin, while attempts to cut paper usage may be hampered by staff not using smaller fonts or not printing double-sided.

Implement simple switches around the office: Relatively small habit changes can reduce emissions. Here are a few examples of easy switches that make a difference.

  • Switch to LED lighting
  • Switch to low-VOC products
  • Reduce pesticide use
  • Move to all-electric equipment for landscaping
  • Go paperless
  • Cycle to work
  • Switch off appliances at the end of the day
  • Enable power save mode
  • Unplug phone chargers
  • Swap a desktop computer for a laptop
  • Offer recycling
  • Adjust the thermostat by 1-2 degrees

Invest in clean air: Larger organizational changes make an even greater impact, including shifts in technology, employee programs and facility upgrades. Transitioning to energy efficiency and renewable energy sources can also SAVE your business money!

  • Offer public transportation passes to employees
  • Encourage telecommuting
  • Reassess business travel
  • Install electric vehicle chargers at work
  • Get an energy assessment done on your business (utility companies like Rocky Mountain Power offer energy audits)
  • Assess your facility for air tightness and air seal your building to reduce energy waste
  • Invest in carbon offsets
  • Install on-site renewable energy sources
  • Contract with your utility for off-site renewable energy sources
  • Build a zero emission facility from the ground up and see how much money your business will save!

 

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