Working from home has eliminated the environmental impact of our commutes and keeping the office lights on, but environmentally friendly changes to our daily routines don’t have to stop there. Since you’re already helping the world by staying put, why not kick it up a notch and see what steps you can take to continue to reduce your carbon footprint at home.

Get into a green frame of mind with these tips for staying sustainable in your home office.

Opt to make meals from scratch.

Now that you are settled into your work from home routine, it’s the perfect time to prepare more homemade meals. With no need to grab a quick bite on the go, try to cut back on purchasing individually packaged snacks and buy in bulk when you can.

Missing your morning coffee run? Skip the plastic and brew your own cup o’ Joe at home. Finally test out that plant-based recipe you saved to your Pinterest board forever ago. Make a fresh sandwich for lunch and forgo the convenience store plastic wrap. With all-day access to your kitchen and pantry, the meal-making possibilities are endless.

Adopt energy-saving habits.

Reduce your carbon footprint, and your utility bill, while sheltering in place.

  • Switch off your lights. Utilize natural light by setting up your workspace near a window or working outside on a nice day. And when you do use lights, remember to turn them off when you leave a room!
  • Power down your devices. Putting your computer into “sleep mood” at the end of the day may be convenient, but it’s also a huge power drain. To avoid wasting energy, turn off all devices including monitors, printers, and speakers when they are not in use. This practice will also help you set work/life boundaries while your home is your office.
  • Adjust your thermostat. Take advantage of the mild spring weather and turn your heating and cooling system off when possible. Not only will your efforts save energy, you will also eliminate loud background noises during your video conferences!

Ditch as many unnecessary paper and plastic products as possible.

The key to swapping out single-use is being prepared, which is even more doable when you have access to everything at home! Rethink the “disposable mentality” and say goodbye to throwaway items you can easily replace with durable, reusable alternatives.

  • Break up with your paper towels. If you accidentally knock over your coffee mug, reach for washable cloth rags to clean up the mess instead.
  • Avoid single-use plastic bottles. Stay hydrated all day long with a reusable water bottle or simple drinking glass since you’re staying put.
  • Take paperless notes to keep track of all your projects and deadlines. If you’re still craving old-fashioned pen and paper, try a small whiteboard to jot down your thoughts without the waste. Do what you can to keep your trash cans empty.

Be an eco-conscious online shopper.

Many have turned to e-commerce to avoid shopping in crowded stores. The developing pandemic situation notwithstanding, this year we have already seen a spike in packaging and shipping waste from online shopping, so better not to make the issue worse.

Reassess the items that you want to order. Can they be upcycled out of materials you already have? If something is broken, can it be repaired? With a little extra time on our hands, we can use the internet to discover new ways to reuse and repurpose, instead of seeking out new things we don’t necessarily need.

When you think about purchasing something new, take a moment to consider: “Will I be using this item for a long time? If not, is it worth buying it now?” When you can, say no to products that are harmful to the environment, such as disposable items without a practical recycling solution.

Everything is technically recyclable, however, which brings us to…

Recycle everything through Zero Waste Box™.

From delivery food containers to bubble wrap, single-use plastics and other disposables such as gloves and masks are more popular than ever. Do what you need to do to stay safe, well, and productive during these uncertain times and let us help you recycle everything with our range of Zero Waste Box™ solutions.

Keep disposable gloves off the ground after you’ve gone grocery shopping. Reduce shipping material garbage from online purchases and doorstep deliveries. Recycle your take-out dining disposables and other plastic packaging. Zero Waste Boxes make it easy to have a positive impact and reduce what you send to landfill, all without leaving your home.

This post was originally published on the Zero Waste Box™ blog. Visit us there for more expert advice on recycling, zero waste lifestyle tips, and more! 

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