Given that many Americans spend a majority of the day at work, finding ways to be green in the office is an important part of reducing climate change and living an environmentally friendly lifestyle. Even if your workplace as a whole isn’t adopting sustainable business practices — though really, there are many reasons management should do so (reducing bills being one of them) — there are things you can do and habits you can adopt as an employee to make your personal workspace more eco-friendly and lower your impact on the earth.

Green Your Commute

Did you know that each working American spends approximately 47 hours per year commuting through traffic? This adds up to 3.7 billion hours and 23 billion gallons of gas wasted in traffic each year.

Carpooling, riding a bike and using public transport are some of the ways to reduce this stress on the environment. If you are in a position to change your ride, consider a hybrid or electric car, as these truly help to reduce emissions.

The best option, however, if your company allows it, is to telecommute. With more millennials entering the workforce, companies are increasingly allowing employees to work remotely, so as to appeal to this generation’s desires of freedom and flexibility. Not only does this help save the air, but will also save you the time you would usually spend on moving to and from your workplace, thus increasing productivity.

Recycle and Use Green Materials

This may seem like an obvious and extremely clichéd suggestion, but it’s surprising how few people recycle, even though it is so easy to implement. You can start by getting a separate trash can for work to use as a recycling bin at your desk. This way, recycling becomes as effortless as other modes of paper disposal. When possible, choose to go paperless, or at least use post-consumer recycled stationery. Using a whiteboard or blackboard for note-taking is much better than a notebook, as you can easily erase and reuse without wasting paper. Even your work attire can be recycled — going to local thrift stores is the perfect way to upgrade your wardrobe and also give back to the community, all while keeping your expenses low. Give up paper towels and plastic bags, and bring in your own cloth napkins and reusable totes. These are things you can control that don’t require sign-off by upper management, though most superiors shouldn’t have a problem with these measures, anyway.

Push for Green CSR/Volunteering Activities

In today’s society, corporate social responsibility (CSR) is of increasing importance. CSR often ensures that a company takes steps to address the social and environmental side effects of their business. CSR is viewed differently than philanthropy. When properly implemented, CSR…