Strovolos Mayor Andreas Papacharalambous has confirmed that his municipality is set to get the first ‘Green Office’ in Cyprus in a bid to become more environmentally friendly.
A ‘Green Office’ is a practical environmental management system for offices. It helps the office to reduce the ecological footprint and greenhouse gas emissions. The move is under the auspices of the Environmental Commissioner Ioanna Panagiotou and is being organised by CYMEPA (Cyprus Maritime Environment Protection Association).
“Office premises hold a key position in energy consumption and in environmentally sustainable working methods and solutions such as water saving, energy saving and recycling,” Papacharalambous told state radio on Tuesday morning.
“We hope to motivate not only our staff to act in an environmentally friendly way in everyday tasks but to also motivate the entire community of Strovolos. That is why, we have invited four schools to attend the opening ceremony for the ‘Green Office’ on Tuesday morning.”
He added: “We feel especially proud to have become the first council in Local Government to have been awarded a certificate for the ‘Green Office’.”
With regards to office paper, some of the methods used by other Green Offices abroad include, the use of both sides of paper, shred and reused unwanted paper, avoiding colour printing, printing in draft mode (to save on ink), purchasing recyclable chlorine-free paper, encouraging more online/server work among the employees as opposed to using paper and providing air dryers instead of paper towels.
With regards to electronic equipment, employees will be told to turn off equipment when not in use, recycling e-waste (such as mobile phones, computers, printers), purchasing high quality equipment (that will last longer than cheaper products) and using undated erasable calendars.
With regards to electricity, switch to fluorescent or LED lighting, turn off lights when not in use and take advantage of natural lighting and when it comes to computers, unplug computers when not in use, set your computer to sleep mode to save on energy and banish screen savers and instead use ‘none’ or a ‘blank screen’.
Other methods include doing dishes, providing filtered water instead of bottled water, installing low-flow faucets and toilets and change the way employee gifts are made such as planting a tree in their name or making donation to a local charity.
Cyprus Telecommunications Authority (Cyta) has already implemented the ‘Green Office’ scheme.