Sustainable Home Offices

Looking to make your home office more sustainable? These resources are here to help you reduce your overall carbon footprint while working remotely. Check out our May 2020 Newsletter for more tips and tricks for sustainable home offices! 

Waste:

Reducing Food Waste

Tips from the EPA on how to reduce wasted food at home. 

Santa Cruz Recycling and Waste Reduction

Updates and guides from the City of Santa Cruz on reducing waste and propperly recycling. Includes a searchable database of how and where to recycle or dispose of common household items.

Grey Bears Recycling Services

While Grey Bears thrift stores and donation centers are closed, they are still operating their recycling services. Click through their website to see which services are still up and running. 

Hard Core Compost Drop Off Site

Hard Core Compost is operating a drop off site at the Homeless Garden Project (on Shaffer Road at the end of Delaware Street) from 12pm - 4pm every Friday. Optional $5 donation per bucket via cash or venmo (@hardcorecompost). The above link is a guide on what compostables they accept. 

Water:

Checking for Leaks

Learn how to check for leaks under your sinks. 

Energy:

Benefits of Natural Light

Not only does natural light help cut down on energy usage, but it can also help improve your mood and workflow!

Power Saving Smart Strips

Smart strips help reduce energy and electricity loads beyond what your average extension cord can do. 

Million LED Challenge

Take advantage of the Million LED Challege to purchase energy-saving LED light bulbs at low cost. 

Personal Sustainability:

Office Friendly Plants

Adding houseplants to your office is a great way to improve air quality and your mood. Check out this guide to help you pick the best plants for your office. 

Regrowing Vegetables

Have a lot of vegetable scraps lying around? Some of those can be used to regrow new veggies, giving you an almost endless supply!

Meal Prep Tips

Meal prepping is great for the environment because it reduces food waste. It's also great when working from home because it can reduce stress related to cooking and planning dinner each night. 

Home Office Assessment Challenge

In May 2020, the Green Office Program put together a challenge for people working remotely to assess the sustainability of their homes/home offices. Although the official challenge time period is over, feel free to continue to use the challenge as a resource to become more aware of your home's sustainability. 

Carbon Footprint:

Ecological Footprint Calculator

Use this online calculator to see how many earths your current lifestyle requires, as well as when your "earth overshoot day" is. 

Benefits of Telecommuting

Read a Carbon Neutrality Fellow's article about the pros and cons of telecommuting. 

Shopping Bag Considerations

It can seem like choosing reusable or paper bags is the most sustainable, but it's a bit more complicated than that. Reusing plastic bags may actually produce fewer carbon emissions than single use paper bags. Read this helpful article to learn the pros and cons of all the options. 

Greenwashing Training

Use this link to the UCSC Learning Center to take the Greenwashing Training. Just log into the learning center and search "greenwashing training." Takes about 30 minutes to complete. 

Homemade Toxic Free Cleaners

Learn how to create homemade cleaners free of toxins, especially helpful when it seems that every grocery store is out of cleaning supplies these days. 

Farmers Markets 

Santa Cruz Farmers Markets are still open! Shopping at farmers markets is a great way to support local farmers (who are heavily impacted by the COVID-19 crisis) while getting outside.