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Plastic waste is an epidemic sweeping the entire globe. Whether it’s on land, in our oceans, or in our homes, these nondegradable materials are toxic to all they come into contact with. In fact, the number of contaminants and toxins in water bottles alone can make the average person, and local wildlife, extremely sick in large quantities. Even so, we still commonly use plastics for daily tasks such as transporting goods, preparing and eating meals, and getting our healthy supply of water. All these activities take place in the home and, especially, at an individual’s place of employment. So if you’re looking to decrease the amount of plastic you use, start by reading this guide to reducing plastic waste at your workplace and begin the transition.

Keep Reusable Utensils Available

Plastic plates, cups, and cutlery are at the center of many workplace meals, events, and parties. These items are used only once and are extremely resistant to the elements and can stay in our landfills for generations. As such, one of the major ways you can reduce the amount of plastic waste your workplace produces is by replacing these items with the reusable variety. You could do this by encouraging your workers to bring their own kitchenware from home or even supplying the office with these items yourself. Either way, your office is producing less trash, saving money, and best of all, eliminating the use of plastic utensils.

Provide Access to Unlimited Filtered Water

Plastic water bottles are another common source of plastic waste in the office. Whether it’s from buying drinks from the vending machine or individuals bringing their own from home, these bottles are used more than any other plastic item. Worst of all, as much as these items are used, they are rarely disposed of properly. Very few used water bottles are actually recycled, making them the heart of the plastic waste epidemic. Fortunately, this is a problem that’s simple to fix when you adopt new ways of supplying your office with water. It’s for this reason that water dispensers are a great addition to any large office. These devices provide a large group of people with an unlimited supply of water while cutting down on the number of plastic bottles bought and used daily. Just be sure you think about all the necessary considerations when buying a water dispenser to ensure you’re getting the right one for your needs.

Request That Suppliers Use Less Plastic Packaging

Another effective way to reduce plastic waste at your workplace is by limiting the amount of plastic being delivered to the office in the first place. Though it might feel like it isn’t in your power to do so, as the client, you can request fewer plastic items be used in the delivery of your goods. Simply reducing the amount of plastic you receive in deliveries will cut back on the cost of disposing of it as well as put you in better compliance with local environmental laws. The best way to accomplish this is by writing a formal letter explaining your company’s desire to cut back on your business’s plastic use. This will keep the relationship between you and your supplier positive while helping them understand your objectives. In suggesting this change in the system, you may also inspire your suppliers to adopt an eco-friendlier mindset as well.

Give Employees Reusable Items

In addition to providing employees with reusable kitchenware, you can further reduce the amount of plastics used and discarded by giving them reusable bags and water bottles. Not only is this a great way to be eco-friendly, but it also gives you a great opportunity to increase company morale with branded gifts. In doing this, you’ll also be able to better show your employees that you’re serious about reducing your environmental impact and that you want them to be involved. You could also give these items away as a method of rewarding employees for their hard work or to celebrate certain occasions like their birthdays. This can make them feel more valued by you and that their resilience is being rewarded.

Bring Lunch From Home Rather Than Buy It

When you go out to eat, you’re creating significantly more waste than you would be if you just brought in your own lunch. This waste can add up very quickly and can end up doing more harm, in the office and the environment, than good. It’s for this reason that you should encourage your employees to bring in homemade lunches rather than continuously order takeout. While you can’t hold them to this way of life, one way to encourage them to do this is by leading by example. Instead of frequently ordering out for meetings, ask the participants to bring their own lunches or even do a potluck. This is a significantly healthier alternative as well as the most cost-effective and environmentally friendly.

Display Recycling Containers in Various Locations

Though it’s common knowledge that individuals should be recycling their used plastic products, it’s still a rarity for them to actually do it. This, unfortunately, places millions of plastic items into landfills where they’ll sit for years, rather than in recycling plants where they can be repurposed. Oftentimes, the reason individuals don’t recycle their plastic products is because they can’t find a way to do so. After all, in the rush to get to a meeting, the last thing anyone wants to do is hunt down a recycling bin. So, to increase the recycling rate in your office, it’s crucial that you place these bins in various locations as well as make them easy to find.

At H2O Coolers, we provide premium bottleless water dispensers to the New York City area as well as top-notch maintenance and service to ensure that they last. In this way, we not only supply you with the quality drinking water you need, but we also are doing our part to end the plastic waste epidemic one unused bottle at a time. That’s why with our water coolers installed in your office complex, you’ll be keeping your workers happy and healthy while helping save the planet.

Guide to Reducing Plastic Waste at Your Workplace