All businesses, whether large or small, generate office paper and other recyclables. A customized recycling program will allows your staff to easily dispose of recyclable items. It will cut down on your disposal fees and your office’s environmental impact.
In order for your recycling program to be successful, you must have the support of everyone in your organization.
- All staff
- Clients and Visitors
- Cleaning and Building Maintenance Staff
Studies show customers, employees and the general public regard businesses that have a waste reduction program in place more favorably than businesses that do not.
A few simple steps will help your office develop an effective recycling program:
ORGANIZE A “GREEN TEAM”
The “Green Team” should include someone from each group within your organization. The team will be responsible for organizing and maintaining the recycling program.
Choose a program coordinator that will be responsible for the overall recycling program. The coordinator should have some knowledge of recycling and be interested in the project.
SET PROGRAM GOALS
Answer these questions before setting up your recycling program:
- Why does your office need a recycling program?
- Who will be responsible for the program?
- How will your business gain the support of your employees?
DECIDE WHICH MATERIALS TO COLLECT
Start by collecting a few materials at first, and slowly grow your program as participation increases.
The typical office mainly generates paper: computer and writing paper, envelopes, magazines, file folders, journals, newsprint, business forms, telephone books, and sticky notes.
Start by collecting paper products, and as your program grows you can add additional items, such as hard plastics 1-7, plastic bags, tin cans, and cardboard.
PROMOTE YOUR RECYCLING PROGRAM
The success of your program depends on the participation of everyone in the office. Introduce the idea of a recycling program at your next staff meeting. Get staff feedback, and decide whether or not everyone is in agreement to the proposed recycling plan.
ANSWER THE QUESTION: WHY RECYCLE?
Recycling helps reduce consumption of natural resources, such as trees used to make paper, fossil fuels used to make plastics and metal extracted through strip mining.
Precious landfill space is conserved when you recycle, because waste is diverted from the landfill.
FIND YOUR LOCAL RECYCLING DEPOT
Contact your local recycling depot to find out which materials are recyclable. If your business is located in Fort St. John or Dawson Creek, you can also inquire about our commercial recycling collection service.
For a list of recycling depots in our region click here.
KEYS TO SUCCESS
The key to success in any recycling program is the involvement and education of all the staff from the top down.
- All bins should be clearly labeled and placed in the appropriate locations
- Consider restricting the openings on the lids to cut down on garbage contamination
- Ongoing recycling education is vital, otherwise people lose interest and go back to their old habits
REDUCE YOUR USE OF DISPOSABLES
- Send inter-office memos by e-mail
- Use both sides of paper when copying material
- Provide glass coffee mugs, dishes and silverware instead of plastic
- Use reusable computer and fax machine cartridges
- Consider purchasing used equipment that has a good life span left instead of new
PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL OFFICE MATERIAL
Much of the office paper generated by your organization may contain private and confidential information. Therefore, it should be shredded before being recycled.
Consider purchasing a shredder for your office.