HR News Update

New Tool Offers Tips for Greener Workplaces

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has created a new online tool to provide Americans with tips and information on how to save energy and protect the environment in the workplace.

Energy use in commercial buildings and manufacturing plants accounts for nearly half of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions and nearly 50 percent of energy consumption nationwide. With the average American worker spending almost 8 hours a day at their place of employment, the workplace offers a unique opportunity for people to make a significant impact in the fight against climate change, the agency says.

"Millions of Americans are already doing their part to save energy by being more energy efficient at home," said Robert J. Meyers, EPA's principal deputy assistant administrator for Air and Radiation. "With help from EPA's Energy Star program, we can also take many of the same energy efficient steps in the workplace."

Energy Star @ Work is an animated image of a typical office work space with tips and links to information employees can use--from starting a Green Team in the office to simply changing a desk lamp bulb.

Some of the tips included in the Energy Star @ Work tool include:

  •           Replace the bulbs in desk lamps with Energy Star qualified compact fluorescent light bulbs. These light bulbs use about 75 percent less energy than incandescent bulbs and last up to 10 times longer.

  •           Energy Star qualified lamps and light fixtures also are available for even more energy savings.

  •           Use a power strip as a central "turn off" point when you are done using office equipment to completely disconnect the power supply. Even when turned off, electronic and IT equipment often use a small amount of electricity when plugged in.

  •           Remember to turn off your lights when leaving conference rooms and your work space, especially at the end of the day.

  •           Use Energy Star qualified battery chargers or power adapters which, on average, use 30-35 percent less energy than conventional models. Don't forget to unplug battery chargers or power adapters when equipment is fully charged or disconnected from the charger.

  •          Get involved! Create a Green Team with your co-workers, help reduce office waste, and set a goal to earn the Energy Star label for your building.

EPA also offers energy-saving tips for building managers, executives, and small businesses; information on taking the Energy Star Challenge; and a downloadable tip card to pass along to friends, family, and coworkers.

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