Ways to green your office.

Making a difference is easy.

easy on the planet logo

There are so many ways to be green at the office and at home. Purchasing greener products is a great first step.

Buying green

  • When choosing what to put in your cart, look for products with environmental attributes like recycled materials, credible third-party certifications, and other eco-designed elements. You can also choose from products that meet our "eco conscious" criteria for more advanced environmental features. Find these on our Shop Green Products page, or by using the "eco conscious" filter to narrow your selection.
  • Consolidate online orders to reduce the amount of packaging materials used and delivery trips made.
  • Purchase gently used or refurbished furniture and fixtures for your office. You can also set up areas for free exchanges of unwanted office supplies, furniture and equipment. Then donate unwanted items to organizations in need.
  • Encourage employees to use greener transportation and lodging options when traveling for business.
  • Develop and adopt a green purchasing policy for your office, making it easier to buy green.

Save energy

  • Perform an energy audit to uncover key energy and cost-saving opportunities, such as improving air sealing and installing compact fluorescent lightbulbs (CFLs)
  • Turn off lights when they are not in use, and install sensors in offices and conference rooms.
  • Enable power management on technology around the office. Turn off technology and appliances at night and enable standby or sleep mode on computers, copiers and printers to reduce energy consumption when not being used.
  • Speak to your building manager or utility provider about opportunities for purchasing green power.
  • Reduce heating and cooling costs by adjusting thermostats in unused rooms, especially during off hours. Make sure windows are sealed properly to maximize the efficiency of heating and cooling systems.

Reduce, reuse and recycle

  • Conduct a waste audit that will help focus efforts and determine which waste items can be reduced through simple changes or recycling.
  • Speak with your building manager about setting up a recycling program at the office if your company doesn't already have one. For items that may not be accepted by regular recycling providers, such as ink and toner cartridges, electronics and batteries, find off-site recycling resources at earth911.com
  • Place recycling bins next to all trash bins.
  • To reduce paper use, print only what is necessary, make double-sided printing the default on all office computers, reduce document margins to fill page space, and reuse scrap paper whenever possible. And whenever possible, distribute company publications electronically.
  • Use eco-conscious paper options for printing and copying. Look for post-consumer recycled content or agricultural waste fiber content of 30% or more, or paper that is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council.

Learn more about our recycling services.

Green your breakrooms and bathrooms

  • Replace your traditional cleaning products with eco-conscious alternatives that have credible third-party certifications.
  • Purchase paper, cleaning products and utensils containing recycled materials or those that have Forest Stewardship Council certification. You can also consider purchasing reusable plates, cups and silverware for your breakroom.
  • Install low-flow faucets and toilets to reduce water usage. Encourage employees to drink water from reusable glasses and bottles, rather than disposable water bottles. And use tap water or install a water filter.
  • Purchase coffee and other food items with third-party certifications, like organic milk and creamer, Fair Trade-certified teas and Rainforest Alliance-certified coffees.
  • When planning events, use reusable serving ware when possible or recycled paper products when needed. Minimize waste from meal packaging and serve accompaniments and condiments in bulk containers to reduce waste from individual serving packets.

Check out our exclusive line of quality eco-conscious products Sustainable Earth by Staples™

Get involved

  • Create programs and incentives to encourage employees to use eco-responsible forms of transportation like biking, public transit, carpooling and hybrid/electric vehicles. Install bike racks and showers to encourage employees to bike to work and allow employees to telecommute when possible.
  • Recruit a "green team" to start up sustainability initiatives in your office. Encourage employees to take a "sustainability pledge" to green their office lifestyle and encourage employees to voice suggestions.
  • Design eye-catching and clear materials to communicate your green office programs to employees. Put up signage by recycling containers to make it easy for employees to participate in your recycling program.
  • Bring attention to your sustainability initiatives by holding events around national environmental celebrations like Earth Day, America Recycles Day, Bike to Work Day, and Energy Awareness Month.

Go solar for Staples cash

Putting solar on the roof of your home or business is easier and more affordable than ever before. To make more solar power happen for our customers, Staples teamed up with Energy Sage to create the EnergySage Marketplace for Staples customers

The EnergySage Marketplace helps you learn about solar, get quotes online from multiple pre-screened installers, and compare offers in an apples-to-apples way. If you go solar through an installer on the EnergySage Marketplace for Staples customers, you won't just save on your electricity bill and help the planet. You'll also receive a Staples e-gift card from $125 to $2,000 or more depending on the size of the system installed.

Calculate your
environmental footprint

Even the smallest changes can add up to a big impact. Check out some of the calculators below to see how your actions can help lead to a more sustainable environment.

Environmental Paper Network's Paper Calculator

Calculate the environmental impact of your recycled paper choices.

CarbonFund Office Carbon Footprint Calculator

Calculate and offset your office emissions.

EPA Waste Reduction Model (WARM)

Calculate the benefits of recycling and waste-reduction efforts at your company.

EPA Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator

Calculate the impacts of energy and fuel use and the savings from reducing both.

HP Carbon Footprint Calculator for Printers

Even your printer choice has an impact. See the benefits of choosing a better solution.

EcoRewards Recycling Calculators

Learn the benefits of recycling and determine the volume of recyclables generated based on your number of employees.

My Footprint

Calculate the area of land that you need to support your lifestyle based on where you live, driving habits, eating habits and more.