OnlineMetals has been on a journey to lighten our environmental footprint for the past few years. Through this process we’ve learned a lot, and we have a few ideas that we hope can help your workplace to get on board with the Earth Day program too.
Know Your Damage
It’s great to go green, and often we want to jump right into the programs. But before you do that, it’s important to know your baseline of consumption in order to measure your improvements. “We can’t grow what we don’t measure!”
Before you start your green initiatives, take an inventory of your raw material consumption and energy usage. You can even track this on a spreadsheet along with the cost of consumption to easily calculate any savings you will realize from the changes. We’re EnviroStar Certified in our Seattle facility, and can highly recommend the resources available through this program. Through our EnviroStar certification process we were able to identify many areas of energy cost savings and simple pollution reducing strategies!
Reduce Your Pulp | Get E-Contracts
Thanks to a law passed by Congress in 2000, any signature made at the bottom of a digital document is binding. This could be typing in an email, clicking an accept button or using an electronic pen. There are also e-signature services for the very conscienscous or legally delicate among us. Check out DocuSign, for one resource. Most contracts just get filed away and provide little value in using all that paper. Plus, you could get by with less storage space! That will save you some money too.
The Best Pick-up Lines
Recycling doesn’t have to be a lot of effort on your part. In fact, even for commercial businesses that are generating moderate to huge amounts of waste, you don’t have to lift a bin to get rid of the material in the best green way possible! Simply find a service that will come to you and pick your materials up. You may even make some money on it!
- •Twice a week we have a 20 yard paper/cardboard bin picked up.
- •Universal waste such as fluourescent lights, batteries, etc. gets picked up and taken directly to an approved collection center.
- •Wood pallets (if not re-used) are given away to happy customers who just want to take them away and re-use them. Not a single one hits the dumpster and we don’t have to do a thing except let people know they’re available.
- •We don’t typically have much left over after custom cutting metals, but the small amount of scrap metals left over from our order processing is collected monthly by a vendor who actually pays us for the materials they will recycle.
We hope these simple tips will inspire you with some ideas on how to get started in your business! For assistance with initiating a green program, check out these free resources.
- •EnviroStars: Regionally based program in Washington State with resources for getting your business certified, or finding local service providers that are certified to manage your recycling pick-up and waste removal.
- •EnergyStar: National program sponsored by the Environmental Protection Agency with resources for homes and businesses. Find products, services and free benchmarking tools.