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Posts from the ‘Office Awareness’ Category

Grapefruit + Bergamot All Purpose Cleaner ~ Sapadilla

Sapadilla’s plant-based, biodegradable, ecofriendly cleaners are heaven! A dollop of these highly concentrated cleaners can clean everything from your kitchen, floors, bathroom, or your outdoor Adirondack chairs. This eco-cleaner company is knocking green cleaning out of the park. We use our Full Circle home Grunge Buster brush with these highly effective, sugar based products, that are infused with gorgeous essential oils. The office and our homes have never looked or smelled better. Do yourself a favor and pickup this modern, green cleaner for your house, your family and friends will be impressed.

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Rosemary & Peppermint Countertop Cleanser ~ Sapadilla

Every countertop in our house is clean and sparkling from this fabulous plant-based cleanser made by the very green, Sapadilla.  This eco-friendly company uses alkyl polyglucoside, a naturally derived and highly effective sugar as the cleaning agent in all of their products.  The rest of the ingredients are made from renewable resources like coconut, palm and corn oil, as well as 100% pure essential oil blends without synthetic additives.  The aroma of the Rosemary & Peppermint is fresh, clean, light, and probably the best smelling cleaning product I’ve ever used.  Sapadilla, makes their products in small batches to guarantee quality and consistency here in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.  The boutique company never tests on poor little animals and is free of harsh or questionable chemicals.  If we haven’t convinced you already, they contribute 1% of all revenues to 1% For The Planet.

Side note:  The Full Circle Home Cellulose Cloths are the perfect tool to use with this amazing product.

Cellulose Cleaning Cloths ~ Full Circle Home

Full Circle Home sells these eco-fabulous cellulose cleaning cloths to replace your old dated and wasteful paper towels.  These reuseable cloths are plant-based and biodegradable, but sturdy enough to be freshened up in the dishwasher or in boiling water.  I use them in my office kitchen to wipe up annoying coffee spills and to do the dishes.   We use them at home too on the counters, for spills, wiping dishes down, everywhere.   They are sold in pack with three cheerful colors; sun, sea, and a scarlet.  The cloths dry like any sponge but with a dab of water they come to life again.  Be green and save green, these handy cloths are only $6 on Amazon.

Composting ~ The Office

My biggest pet peeve when it comes to composting at the office is that no one composts soiled napkins.  Kitchens and kitchenettes are stocked with paper towels (that are hopefully made with recycled content) and are wasted like water.  Too add injury to insult they are then thrown in the garbage, GASP!  People after you wipe up your coffee spill or the mess you made making your bagel put your paper towels in the COMPOST!  If you don’t already have an existing compost program please start one today!  It saves money from operating expenses and it is great for the environment.  Remember it is Earth Month, celebrate the planet we live on and find more tips and products on how to be green here, by Living Aware.

iPad Chic ~ Grove

Now that everyone has purchased the long-awaited iPad 3, be sure you deck it out in this sleek sustainable case by Grove.  The beautiful bamboo and wool felt case is meticulously constructed by artisans here in the USA.  The wood combines with the sturdy single-panel felt cover that serves as a screen protector.  The case’s integrated magnets bind the handmade bamboo shell for a very smooth feel.  Grove’s Wool Felt case is compatible for both the iPad 2 and 3.  Get yours before April 1st and you can secure it at $119, instead of the normal $139 price tag. 

 
 

An Energy Star Building!

One of my buildings was awarded the coveted Energy Star Label today!   In order for us to qualify for the ENERGY STAR award, we had to earn a 75 or higher on EPA’s 1-100 energy performance scale, indicating that our facility performs better than at least 75% of similar buildings nationwide.   This is a great feat for any property reach the this standard of energy efficiency.

To reach our goal we had to make sure we were using the best and most ecofriendly lighting, low energy appliances, and educating the  building occupants on the effect they could have by turning off computers, lights, and unnecessary equipment to reduce consumption.  We utilized rebate programs from the Seattle City Light to upgrade our HVAC and lighting control system to have an optimal start time, switched out energy-hog lighting with new LED bulbs in our lobby and elevators to keep the overall costs down and obtain a better ROI.   We knew we had to be part of the change since electricity use in commercial buildings and industrial facilities accounts for almost half of all energy consumption in the United States today  and costs over $200 billion per year.  On top of that, commercial buildings and manufacturing plants are also responsible for nearly half of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions which contribute to climate change.  Our building’s energy reduction means less carbon in carbon in our atmosphere, less money our tenants spend to operate their businesses, and creating a better bottom line for everyone.  Find out what your office building is doing to be a better steward of the Earth and your community.

Earth Hour ~ March 31st 2012 @ 8:30 PM

All of my buildings are signed up to participate in Earth Hour this year on March 31st at 8:30 PM.  Please join me, my colleagues, and friends by making the pledge to turn the lights out for an hour.  Be sure to participate in the ‘I Will If You Will’ by doing something amazing for the environment and bettering your community.

Composting at the Office

One of the many green amenities I offer at my properties  is composting.  When a new company moves into one of my buildings they get a beautiful living orchid and a compost bin to get them started in the right direction.   

Since the average American tosses away 4.5 pounds of trash per day, but approximately 25% could be compost.  Composting is a critical step in reducing the garbage sent to landfills, which produce methane gas 72% more powerful than carbon dioxide.  What a difference we could make to our environment if we could all do something as simple as compost our biodegradable materials.  Compostable materials tend to way more than other items that go in the garbage so if your garbage is weighed at each pickup separating it out can possibly save a lot off your bottom line.

Here are some basic steps on starting your office compost program:

  • Find a local provider in your area.  Google or your local municipality works well to come up with local providers.  I am lucky to have an amazing vendor in Seattle called Cedar Grove Compost.
  • Reach out to like-minded people and operations to meet with the vendor and discuss how the project would operate.  Questions to think about:  How many pickups per week, where the bins will be located for pickup, cost, janitorial staff pickup and any challenges to the building layout for service.
  • Order the bins that each tenant will need.  Amazon offers bins and compostable liners of all sizes, a large bin with a lid for a bigger tenant or smaller stainless steel or plastic kitchen counter bins for coffee grounds and banana peels.
  • EDUCATE THE MASSES!  Work with your compost vendor, janitorial, and the others that are passionate to educate everyone on what goes in what bin.  Plastic is NOT biodegradable!  Napkins ARE!
  • Launch your program!  Continue to monitor use and any contamination.  Periodic educational sessions are always great to educate new employees and companies that transition through the property.

One Lobby Down

For those that have followed the transformation of one of my building lobbies, here is the final product. The overall project consisted of new paint, brighter lights, new furniture from Stylex MG Collection, a cocktail table from Room and Board, Shaw Carpet bound into a rug, and the rearranging of some existing plants. The focal point, a wall of colored canvases bought at the local art store and painted with Benjamin Moore’s Natura Interior Paint cost under $300. The total ecofriendly project came in under $10,000 which was a huge win and a huge improvement.

New & Improved LED Bulbs

Energy efficient lighting is literally changing overnight. Previously LED bulbs only contained one light that streamed light pretty directly to the ground and looked streaky. The newer LED bulbs contain three lights which allows the light to span out further. Look at the amazing difference in my elevators.  If you were hesitant to use LED lights in the past, fear no more!