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Five No-Big-Deal Ways to Make Your Office Greener

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"Going green" — we all know it's a good thing, especially in the workplace, but, ugh, it sounds hard. Does going green mean you have to drive to work in a car small enough to fit in a college dorm room? Maybe it means you'll now be powering your laptop via stationary bike (sweaty keyboard, no thanks)? Good news: it's actually way easier to go green in your office than you may think.

Small changes can go a long way — from using biodegradable k-cups like the San Francisco Bay OneCup to installing a smart thermostat, you can help the Earth out a little by making small adjustments in your everyday office life.


Sustainable Wood

Office furniture is often made from materials that aren't recyclable, or don't break down easily in landfills. Instead of adding to the pile, aim for more earth-friendly choices, like biodegradable bags, sustainable wood desks, and chairs made of recycled plastics and metals. When it comes to wooden furniture, look for pieces made from reclaimed wood or sustainably harvested forests or farms. You'll be surprised to find that you can find more eco-friendly versions of almost anything in an office — even computer equipment. The Zen Bamboo Bluetooth Keyboard is made from a renewable wood that is also recyclable.


Conscious Coffee-Making

When single serving k-cup coffee makers came out on the market, office coffee drinkers were pumped. The k-cup coffee makers seemed less wasteful since you didn't have to brew a whole pot to get a single cup, and they were great for morale because they allowed everyone in the office the option to make whatever kind of coffee they want. However, we all quickly realized that single serve coffee makers make a lot of waste — those little cups the coffee came in were made of plastic, and soon they started piling up in landfills.

Thanks to the clever guys at San Francisco Bay OneCup, this isn't a problem anymore. They make 97% biodegradable cups, so you can get a single cup of coffee that actually tastes great and isn't putting plastic into the environment. Now, you can enjoy your single serve coffee without filling up the landfills. Imagine how much coffee you drink in a week, then multiply that by everyone in your office, it really adds up!

Smart Thermostats

You might've heard about the Nest Thermostat but never caught up on why it's such a big deal. According to Nest, most people end up wasting a significant amount of energy because they never bother to program their thermostats. Nest, however, is smarter than the average thermostat — it adjusts the temperature automatically by memorizing your thermostat patterns. Once you've changed the temperature a few times, it will mimic when and how you set it, and it grows smarter with time. According to Nest, this can save up to 26% of energy otherwise wasted.


If You Need Disposables, Make 'Em Compostable

Reusable dishes and utensils are the way to go when it comes to minimizing waste, but if you're throwing an office event that requires disposable tableware, make it compostable. Bambu makes beautifully designed compostable utensils, plates, bowls, and cups all from, yes, bamboo (they make reusable wares, too).


Solar Chargers

You don't have to mount a solar panel to the hood of your car in order to harness the mighty power of the sun — all you need is a solar charger, which is fortunately a bit more accessible. Voltaic runs a great line of solar chargers that will aid you in charging pretty much any of your portables — phones, tablets, laptops, and cameras. The conversion rate isn't bad, either. For example, the Fuse 10W Laptop Charger will give you 30 minutes of laptop time for every hour in the sun. Think about it: free energy is shining down on the Earth every single day — it's time to take advantage of that.


See? Going green doesn't have to be scary. Little by little, we can switch to eco-conscious products like The San Francisco Bay OneCup to do our part on this planet.

This post is a sponsored collaboration between Rogers Family Company and Studio@Gawker.