Greening your workplace

TUC Green workplaces

Green Skills at Work

Go Green at Work – A handbook for union green representatives

Twenty questions when working out how green your workplace is:
1. Has the organisation had an environmental or carbon audit?
2. Has it implemented any recommendations?
3. Are unions involved in progressing environmental decisions? (see p19)
4. Does the employer have an accredited Environmental or Carbon Management System (see p27) which should include a way of prioritising, monitoring and working with staff and union(s)?
5. Does heating or cooling keep workers comfortable without wasting energy? (see p31)
6. Is the workplace properly insulated and draught-proofed?
7. Are the thermostats in the right places and set to the right temperature (19ºC for heating, 24ºC for cooling)?
8. Are there automatic power reducing features, e.g. motion sensor lights, timers, power downs? (see p36)
9. Are all bulbs low energy? Are all computer monitors flat-screen?
10. Are eco-options for equipment enabled and are staff trained on using equipment in an eco-friendly way?
11. Is all equipment turned off fully when not in use? If not, why?
12. Is there a commitment to buying equipment and goods only when necessary, and sourced from suppliers with good labour and environmental standards?
13. Is offsetting only carried out as a last resort after looking at energy saving, sourcing green electricity, and onsite renewable/CHP generation? (see p41-46)
14. Is there an up-to-date travel plan that promotes low-carbon transport and reduces unnecessary travel, negotiated with the union? (see p47)
15. Are there effective procedures to minimise the use of all resources including energy, paper, raw materials, packaging and disposable items? (see p54)
16. Is everything recycled that can be, and is everything bought recycled where possible?
17. Are water saving measures in place? (see p59)
18. Are the catering arrangements satisfactory or is food over-processed or packaged?
19. Does the organisation know its carbon footprint? (see p80)
20. What key environmental indicators does it publish? (see the ‘Research’ section) 


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