We did the Climate Week challenge

19 March 2012 by

We decided to combine our team building day with the Climate Week’s one hour challenge.

The challenge (called Green your Environment) was to come up with an idea to turn a space that you are familiar with into a better place for the environment. We all chose the office so that we could make the ideas more comparable. These are the idea's that came out of it. You can vote for your favourite idea here.

Rain water harvesting to fill up the toilet – Joe had this fantastic idea to save on water. It would cost roughly £1,200 to convert our toilet into a greener alternative. Unfortunately for Joe our water bills aren’t that high and so it would take us roughly 8 years to get a return on this. But if you have more than one toilet in your office or a shower this might be an idea for you.

Changing the lighting over to LED - David wanted to change our lighting to make the office both more cost effective and a more pleasant environment, especially on the eye. He researched some figures to highlight how much money per year could be saved and the outcome was really quite astonishing.

Here are the figures:

• A halogen light bulb costs roughly £2, has 2000 hours of life and uses power at 160w.

• An LED bulb costs £12, has 30,000 hours of life and uses power at 3w.

• The cost saving over the first year to run LED lighting would be around £360. By the fifth year the cost saving is a massive £2,048. As you can see there is real case for swapping over the lighting in the office. We have booked our lighting appointment to get the ball rolling. Perhaps you should too?

Outdoors indoors – My idea was to bring a bit of the outdoors to the inside making the office a better environment for the workers. It has been proven that the greening up of an office space with plants is more beneficial to workers then having a window to look out of. Articles about this can be found here. Some of my ideas include;  getting more plants, a water feature, more wood effect into the office fixtures and fittings, paint more of the space in natural colours and change the lighting to be more natural.

Recycled clothing bank - Charlie’s idea was picked as a favourite. Charlie wanted to create a centre for recycling clothes in the office and recruit teenagers to help work on it. A lot of people don’t seem to know that by recycling old clothing you can make a big impact on the environment and there are few clothing banks (see here for your local bank) situated around the city.  Also by asking teenagers to run the bank they can make money out of it (roughly 60p per kg) and can learn business skills at the same time. We could run events for it too from fashion shows to promotion of recycling points.

Social Picnic at Paintworks – Nicola’s idea was to improve both the social aspect of our work place and to promote healthy food in the workplace. Although we have an office here at Paintworks there is not a massive amount of socialising between the different businesses and as a consequence not a great deal is known about each other’s businesses. The idea was to have a monthly get together of all the offices either at the catering caravan or in the event space. Everyone either buys lunch off the diner caravan (helping to improve Charlie, the owner’s business) or brings their own lunch, perhaps to share. This improves the social interaction of the Paintworks as a whole and also has an impact on awareness of each other’s business whilst also promoting a healthy lunch and minimal food wastage. We are also keen to move this idea on. 

We would like to know which idea you like the best. Please click here to vote, it won’t take you more than 30 secs to make a choice.

UK Office:

Unit 5.3 Paintworks, Bath Road,
Bristol BS4 3EH

Tel: +44 (0)117 325 4168


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