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SUSTAINABILITY GUIDE FOR A WORKING-FROM-HOME ROUTINE

While working from home has cut emissions from commuting to the workplace, there are more sustainable practices towards reducing the use of resources and creating a healthy working environment. Check out our sustainability guide for a working from home routine.

Words By Sara Campidelli

14/04/2022

In 2022, working from home is common practice. We got used to Zoom meetings, information exchange through online portals and digital coffee breaks with colleagues. After more than two years since the start of the pandemic, it has become easier for employees and companies to deal with a hybrid to fully remote working environment. 

Working from home does have advantages, and I am not referring only to wearing your pjs all day. The environment is also reaping the benefits, as millions of people stopped commuting everyday, we have seen reduction of carbon emissions and an improvement of the air quality. Data from Breathe London has shown that carbon emissions fell by 25% in the morning and 34% in the evening with reduction of the daily commuters.

However, as the energy to power our home offices is still creating emissions, we can add sustainable practices to our working-from-home routine that can help us further reduce our impact and cut our bills too.

Unplug Your Devices When Possible

When electronic devices are plugged in, they use energy, regardless if you are using them or not. This is true even if you leave your charger plugged-in without your laptop attached. A best practice would be to unplug your laptop and other devices when the battery is fully charged and during the night. This could help your energy-saving by 10% off every month.

Adjust Your Thermostat

In winter, keeping your thermostat at a temperature ranging from 16C to 21C can help you save on heating energy. When working from home, 21C is the ideal temperature to be warm and alert, as a hotter environment can make you sleepy. You can lower to 16C when not at home and during the night, adding an extra blanket if you feel cold easily.

In summer, try to keep your air conditioning system at a higher temperature or better yet use a fan, as it is more energy-efficient.

Adjust The Brightness Of Your Monitor

Did you know that reducing the monitor brightness from 100% to 70% can save up to 20% of the energy consumption of your monitor? And the cool thing is that your eyes won’t even notice the difference. Give it a try!

Set Your Home Office Near A Window 

Natural light can boost our mood, health, and productivity. It’s not just me saying that, there is plenty of research backing up my statement. Setting up your desk near a window can be great to get your dose of vitamin D and to postpone switching on the light, for additional energy-saving.

Home Prep Your Lunch

As we work a few steps away from our kitchen, we can take advantage to prepare our lunch at home. The benefits of eating a home-cooked meal are multiple. We reduce consumption of processed-food and the single-use plastic containers and wrappings that come with it. We can also maximize our grocery shopping for the week and avoid food waste. Our health, our planet and our wallet say thanks!

Use Less Paper

When we used to work at the office we had access to printers, and we were more keen to produce hard copies of our files. Working from home does not require paper as everything can be processed and shared digitally. If you’re like me and still like taking your notes with pen and paper, you can use recycled paper notebooks or re-utilizing the back of print-outs you no longer need.

I hope you find this guide helpful to improve your working from home sustainability routine. Do you have additional tips to be more sustainable? Let us know in the comment section!