Preventing pollution at the workplace, and raising awareness of health and safety issues:

Bring Your Green to Work with ENERGY STAR – The energy saving actions we take as individuals in the workplace can make a big difference in the overall energy performance of a building and can help in the fight against climate change. From changing a desk lamp bulb to unplugging a power charger, EPA’s animated tool –ENERGY STAR@Work – shows us how we can all do our part!

Climate change: What you can do at the office - Business and home offices use a significant amount of electricity for heating and cooling, lighting and operating equipment. Discover some easy ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions both at work and during your commute. Learn how reducing, reusing and recycling at work helps conserve energy.

Business and home offices use a significant amount of electricity for heating and cooling, lighting and operating equipment. Here are four easy ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help make the air cleaner:

  1. Manage office equipment energy use better
    Office equipment and electronics use energy even when idle or on stand-by. To save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions at work, always activate the power management features on your computer and monitor, unplug laptop power cords when not in use and turn off equipment and lights at the end of the day. Consider using a power strip that can be turned off when you're done using your computers, printers, wireless routers and other electronics.
  2. Look for ENERGY STAR qualified products for the office
    When buying new products for your office at work or at home, get the features and performance you want and help reduce greenhouse gases and emissions of air pollutants. Look for ENERGY STAR qualified office equipment, such as computers, copiers, and printers, in addition to more than 50 product categories, including lighting, heating and cooling equipment and commercial appliances.
  3. Ask your office building manager if your office building has earned the ENERGY STAR.
    ENERGY STAR-labeled buildings provide safe, healthy, and productive environments that use about 35 percent less energy than average buildings. Their efficient use of energy also reduces the total operational cost of the building.
  4. Use less energy for your commute
    Switch to public transportation, carpooling, biking, telecommuting and other innovative ways to save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions on your way to and from work. Encourage your employer to offer commuter benefits that address limited or expensive parking, reduce traffic congestion, improve employee recruiting and retention and minimize the environmental impacts associated with drive-alone commuting. If you do drive, find out the fuel efficiency of your vehicle using EPA's and DOE's fuel economy Web site, and make more environmentally-informed choices when purchasing your next vehicle by using EPA's Green Vehicle Guide.
  5. Reduce, reuse, recycle
    Recycle office paper, newspapers, beverage containers, electronic equipment and batteries. Reducing, reusing, and recycling in your office helps conserve energy, and reduces pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from resource extraction, manufacturing, and disposal. You can reduce, reuse and recycle at the office by using two-sided printing and copying; buying supplies made with recycled content; and recycling used printer cartridges. For your old electronics, investigate leasing programs to ensure reuse and recycling or donate used equipment to schools or other organizations.
It's Easy Being Green: A Guide to Planning and Conducting Environmentally Aware Meetings and Events - Provides an outline to assist professionals in planning environmentally aware events such as meetings, workshops, festivals, picnics, and sporting events. Includes profiles of successful events that have been held, and step by step procedures for coordinating events using a planning checklist.

Setting Up a Home Office (PDF) - (4 pp, 443K, About PDF) - This EPA publication (EPA 530-F-04-007) explains how to set up an environment-friendly home office.

On a farm

Ag Center home page - The National Agriculture Compliance Assistance Center (Ag Center) provides comprehensive, easy-to-understand information about compliance that are both environmentally protective and agriculturally sound. Contains major laws and programs that could affect farmers.

Fuel storage practices on the farm - provides an overview of the importance and techniques of proper fuel storage.The risk assessment portion prompts the user to describe how petroleum products are stored and then evaluates the safety of these practices and provides detailed informationabout any problems discovered through the questionnaire.

Managing water pollution from agriculture - describes how agricultural nonpoint source pollution contaminates ground water and degrades wetlands.

Pesticide storage and handling practices on the farm - explains proper handling and storage of pesticides on farmsteads. The software provides a general overview of pesticide handling and storage, a risk assessment section, and recommendations for correcting problems related to pesticide storage.

Worker health and safety

Indoor air quality in large buildings - Learn about the roles of building managers and occupants in maintaining good indoor air quality.

An Office Building Occupant's Guide to Indoor Air Quality - This booklet is intended to help people who work in office buildings learn about the factors that contribute to indoor air quality and comfort problems and the roles of building managers and occupants in maintaining a good indoor environment.

Secondhand smoke - The health risks to children and adults from secondhand smoke are discussed at this site, with links to a number of publications.

Pesticide safety programs - This site presents the EPA Worker Protection Standard which helps protect agricultural workers from pesticide poisoning and injuries.

Protecting the health of nail salon workers - Developed in collaboration with nail salons and other partners, this practical guide can help workers and nail-salon owners make their salons safer workplaces. The guide includes easy-to-use checklists with advice on topics such as proper gloves, masks and handling of products. The guide's non-technical language will help workers understand product ingredients and how to prevent overexposure to those that present potential health risks.

Index of ToxFAQs - ATSDR ToxFAQs is a series of summaries about hazardous substances. Each fact sheet provide answers to the most frequently asked questions (FAQs) about exposure to hazardous substances and the effects of exposure on human health.

Earth Day: At work
Celebrating Earth Day at work