by Rachael Ridley
If you are one of the Australians who has suddenly found themselves working from home, we know it can be a big adjustment. Here are our tips for a smooth transition that makes the most of your time and minimises your impact on the environment.
1. Incorporate nature into your ‘home office’
Even if you’re sitting at the dinner table or crammed into a study nook, placing house plants around you can help you get through the day more effectively. Research has shown exposure to plants in the office has a positive effect on workers by boosting mood and productivity. The use of wood has also proved to have similar effects. So, if you’re in the process of setting up a home office, consider buying a desk made of wood (responsibly sourced of course) and decorating it with as many plants as possible!
2. Keep the kids busy with our educational activity
If your kids are driving you crazy and distracting you from work, we doubt you’re alone! Luckily, we have some fun activities for kids to teach them about positive environmental actions like recycling and tree-planting through puzzles, word games, colouring-in sheets and more. Download the free activity kits on RecyclingNearYou and through the National Tree Day Toolkit.
You could also distract them with our National Tree Day competition for under 18s. We’re asking kids to submit a T-shirt design that reflects what trees mean to them. Entries close 12 April 2020. Learn more about the competition.
3. Recycle your printer cartridges
If you’re churning through printer cartridges more often now that you’re working from home, make sure you put them aside to be recycled through Cartridges 4 Planet Ark. The leftover ink in the cartridge will be turned into artists’ ink and the plastic will be recycled into new products like road surfaces. This product stewardship recycling program, which is certified zero waste to landfill, is made possible through the support of participating manufacturers. So, when you’re buying new printer cartridges, make sure you buy one of the supporting brands so it can be recycled through our program. To find your local drop-off point, visit RecyclingNearYou.
4. Buy recycled copy paper
Choosing Australian-made copy paper that’s made of at least 50% recycled material is an easy way to make a big difference – it reduces your carbon footprint, saves resources such as water and energy, and diverts paper waste from landfill. You don’t need to compromise on quality to get the best environmental office paper available. Planet Ark Paper is Australian made, carbon neutral, FSC certified and made from 100% recycled paper waste. It ticks every box necessary when it comes to protecting our environment and at the same time contributing to the Australian economy.
5. Get your recycling in order
If you’re looking for a project to distract you from the monotony, this could be a good opportunity to set up a great recycling system in your home. If you have space, try adding two extra recycling bins: one for soft plastics and the other for items that can be recycled through special programs, such as batteries and printer cartridges. This is a great time to form new habits. When you’re doing your shopping, shove your soft plastics into your reusable bags to recycle through the REDcycle program (bins are located at Woolies and Coles). To find out where you can recycle other materials, head to RecyclingNearYou.
About the author:
Rachael joined Planet Ark in 2019 after eight years working in media and publishing as a producer, editor and writer. Rachael is excited to use her skills in content creation and communication to instigate positive environmental behaviour change.