We’ve only got one planet that sustains human life. It’s everyone’s responsibility to conserve resources and reduce their footprint so that the Earth will continue to thrive long into the future. It’s one reason why telecommuting is used by many government organizations and promoted by many businesses. When done on a wide scale, telecommuting and working from home can have significant positive impact on the environment. Here are a few of those benefits:
Use less paper
When you interact with your colleagues online, there’s no reason to use paper. You don’t print reports, don’t hang signs, and don’t have office parties that require banners and paper hats. Everything can be done digitally.
Use less fuel
How far do you commute to work? Maybe it’s an hour; maybe it’s ten minutes. Either way, that morning commute is non-existent when you work from home. According to GlobalWorkPlaceAnalytics.com, that comes to $20 billion in savings at the gas station.
Take pressure off our transportation infrastructure
All of those cars on the road impact our highways and streets. Less cars means less wear and tear and increase the lifespan of our roads.
It takes a lot of energy to power an office building. There’s the air conditioning and heat, the servers, the lights, the refrigerator, that giant printer every office has — all of it requires energy.
Think about your lunch time routine in an office environment. If you take a lunch, you pack it in a paper sack, or you have food portioned out into plastic baggies. Maybe you don’t pack a lunch. Maybe you head to the drive-through in your car (burning more fuel) to pick up a quick bite to eat that includes individually wrapped foods, plastic utensils and single-serving condiment containers.
Working in an office usually means professional attire and grooming expenses (hair cuts, manicures, etc). You’ve got to keep up appearances, which means your professional wardrobe has to be updated regularly. Simply put, you shop less when you work from home because it doesn’t matter what you’re wearing.
You choose your furniture, equipment and supplies
When you work in an office, you don’t usually have a say in work-related purchases such as furniture, paper, pencils, pens, etc. Working from home allows you to choose Eco-friendly office furniture, equipment and supplies. You can work under energy saving lights, or no lights if you have plenty of natural light from your windows. You can also choose to throw those windows open on a beautiful day to cool off your home rather than running your AC.
Reduce air pollution
Not burning the fuel it takes to get to work also reduces air pollution. According to GlobalWorkPlaceAnalytics.com, telecommuting can reduce greenhouse pollution by 54 million tons.
Telecommuting provides many great benefits that protect the earth. While many may not feel the need to worry about the Earth, they can consider that many off these benefits also means a great deal of savings to governments, business, and workers. The reality is that telecommuting offers a win-win for everyone, and should be something more organizations look to for all the perks it brings.