Workplaces need to be more eco-friendly, study finds

New data revealed on Monday that over 50% of offices do not employ eco-friendly features.

Commercial property agents surveyed 1,644 UK office workers on their opinions towards eco-friendly efforts in the workplace.

Those who took part were asked to score their current office in terms of eco-friendliness. The data reveals an average score of 2.3 out of 5, with 5 being very eco-friendly.

The most common eco-friendly incentives used by offices are energy efficient utilities and devices, but only 47% of offices have them.

Other incentives include sustainable office stationary, materials and equipment, office challenges and green policies, eco-friendly office design and architectural features and an abundance of plant-life.

However, the data reveals that the majority of office workers do not believe enough is being done by their workplace to tackle climate change.

Employees spoke exclusively to Savoy Stewart, sharing their opinions on the sustainability levels of their workplace.

“As offices house many people for a very large portion of the week, they have a massive impact. And just as important as the green initiatives is the trickle-down effect of, ‘if the company is trying to become more eco-friendly, perhaps I should too’,” Lou Crane, Digital PR and Outreach Manager at Evolved Search, said.

“Unfortunately, though, there are many offices using ‘think before you print’ signatures and that’s it. The agency I work for is reducing single-use plastic and ordering milk in glass bottles from local farms, but I think one of the best incentives is the cycle to work scheme,” Lou Crane continued.

Joe Allen, CCO at First Mile said that “in this day and age, we should be working together to meet sustainability goals, and offices have so many greener alternatives than they used to.”

“At First Mile, we have an office green team focused on implementing new initiatives to help us reduce our impact on the environment. We even have a swap shop cupboard where staff bring in pre-loved clothes and swap them with items that others have brought in,” Joe Allen added.

The discussion takes place against a backdrop of Extinction Rebellion protests and a growing awareness of the climate change crisis.

Companies have begun to implement eco-friendly policies. Earlier this year, Boots announced that it would aim to remove all plastic bags from stores by 2020.

Elsewhere, McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD) decided to remove plastic lids from its McFlurry ice cream in all UK restaurants from September.

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