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Home » Travel and Transport

4 ways working from home helps reduce emissions

Submitted by on Friday, 26 January 2018 Loading Add to favourites  No Comment

working from home reduces emissionsIn 1914, Henry Ford implemented the now-industry standard 40-hour work week in his Ford factory plants. Where before workers were averaging 50, 60 and sometimes even 70-hour weeks, the new standard helped curb prolonged work exposure while also upping overall employee productivity.

Fast forward a hundred years or so and we see a new trend happening: working remotely. As a growing interconnectivity has given more people the freedom to work when (and where) they want, experts predict a not-too-distant future where most — if not all — employees are remote.

While not only helping to reduce emissions, working from home also has a host of other benefits, including more freedom and more opportunity to schedule your work around your social life.

If you’re looking for ways to cut back on your carbon footprint by working from home, here are four tips to help get you started.

1) Stop wasting gas 

Tired of dealing with those ever-grueling morning and late afternoon commutes? We don’t blame you. According to Inrix, a data company based in Washington, the average American commuter spends more than 40 hours a year in traffic and nearly $1400 on gas. Yikes.

While research shows that people tend to be more productive in public, it helps to try to stay in and around your neighbourhood. So keep that car in the garage and look for cafes and other hangouts that offer Internet connection near your home. Just remember to use a VPN to keep your devices secure when you’re out in public.

2. Cut back on electricity bills

With hundreds of bright lights on 24 hours a day, one of the biggest emission contributors is the average U.S. workplace. Therefore, it stands to reason that to help dial back your carbon footprint you first need to adjust your thermostat. That means, dialing back the AC a bit in the summer and the heat in the winter.

Sure, it might sound like a terrible idea, but if your home is properly insulated, you could save hundreds in utilities — not to mention doing your part to be a little more green. In fact, studies have shown that turning your thermostat down three degrees in the winter and three degrees up in the summer helps reduce carbon emissions by roughly 1,050 pounds a year.

Food for thought.

3. Invest in energy-efficient bulbs

Depending on how new your home is, you may also want to invest in energy-efficient light bulbs. Most commonly known as compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) and light-emitting diode (LED) lights, these upgraded bulbs last much longer than your ordinary everyday lights and have the added benefit of also shining brighter.

The EPA states that energy-efficient light bulbs use up to 75% less energy, which not only helps the environment, but also your wallet.

That’s why it simply makes sense to take the time to replace and upgrade your home’s lights.

4. Unplug devices you’re not using

You may not realize it, but every appliance that’s currently plugged in at home is soaking up power (and raking up your electricity bill) even when they’re not turned on. Crazy, right? Energy Star estimates that the average U.S. household spends over $100 a year on electricity bills for devices that are turned off. That’s some decent pocket change you’re literally throwing away.

That said, not every device should be turned off when it’s not in use. Alarm clocks and fridges are prime examples. Your cappuccino maker, however, should definitely be unplugged after your morning coffee.



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