The Subaru Eco-Friendly Assembly Plant
Did you know that the Subaru assembly plant in Lafayette, Indiana was the first ever car manufacturing plant to achieve zero landfill status?
Known as the Subaru of Indiana Automotive (SIA) Manufacturing Plant, this facility recycles 99.3% of its leftover steel, plastic, wood, paper and glass, and then ships the other 0.7% to be incinerated and used to generate electricity by the city of Indianapolis. Absolutely everything is reused and recycled.
Here are 10 Tips for "Thinking Green" from Patriot Subaru
Sourced from The Sierra Club
1. Be bright about light
Make it a habit to turn off the lights when you're leaving any room for 15 minutes or more. Use Energy Star-rated light bulbs and fixtures, which use at least two-thirds less energy than regular lighting, and install timers or motion sensors that automatically shut off lights when they're not needed.
2. Maximize computer efficiency
Turn off your computer-and the power strip it's plugged into-when you leave for the day. Otherwise, you're still burning energy even if you're not burning the midnight oil. (Check with your IT department to make sure the computer doesn't need to be on to run backups or other maintenance.) During the day, setting your computer to go to sleep automatically during short breaks can cut energy use by 70 percent. Remember, screen savers don't save energy.
3. Print smarter
Make it a habit to print on both sides or use the back side of old documents for faxes, scrap paper, or drafts. Avoid color printing and print in draft mode whenever feasible. Buy chlorine-free paper with a higher percentage of post-consumer recycled content. Also consider switching to a lighter stock of paper or alternatives made from bamboo, hemp, organic cotton, or kenaf. Recycle toner and ink cartridges and buy remanufactured ones. According to Office Depot, each remanufactured toner cartridge "keeps approximately 2.5 pounds of metal and plastic out of landfills?and conserves about a half gallon of oil."
4. Go paperless when possible
Think before you print: could this be read or stored online instead? When you receive unwanted catalogs, newsletters, magazines, or junk mail, request to be removed from the mailing list before you recycle the item. Post employee manuals and similar materials online, rather than distribute print copies. They're easier to update that way too.
5. Ramp up your recycling
Make it a habit to recycle everything your company collects. Just about any kind of paper you would encounter in an office, including fax paper, envelopes, and junk mail, can be recycled. So can your old cell phone, PDA, or pager. Place recycling bins in accessible, high-traffic areas and provide clear information about what can and can not be recycled.
6. Close the loop
Purchase office supplies and furniture made from recycled materials.
7. Watch what (and how) you eat
Bring your own mug and dishware for those meals you eat at the office.
Make it a policy to provide reusable dishes, silverware, and glasses. Switch to Fair Trade and organic coffee and tea, and buy as much organic and local food as possible for parties and other events. Provide filtered drinking water to reduce bottled-water waste.
8. Rethink your travel
Invest in videoconferencing and other technological solutions that can reduce the amount of employee travel.
9. Reconsider your commute
Carpool, bike, or take transit to work, and/or telecommute when possible. Organize an office carpool board.
10. Create a healthy office environment
Make it a habit to use nontoxic cleaning products. Brighten up your cubicle with plants, which absorb indoor pollution.Buy furniture, carpeting, and paint that are free of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and won't off-gas toxic chemicals.