Education is the Key to Sustainable Practices in Coworking Spaces
In an era threatened by rising sea levels and severe weather conditions, taking urgent action to safeguard the planet has become more pressing than ever. The coworking industry is making a conscious effort to implement sustainable practices for people and the planet. But what changes should individual shared workspaces adopt? We engaged with industry experts to reveal the five best sustainable practices for coworking spaces, along with four simple actions that can be implemented right now.
1. Educate your coworking community:
Educating people is vital for making sustainable changes. Amy King, co-founder of Good Coworking, organized a community tour of their local recycling consortium to raise awareness about waste management. This led to an increase in recycling efforts both in the workspace and at home. Elisabeth Souquet, a Climate Fresk facilitator, hosts workshops to raise awareness and educate people on their environmental impact. Education plays a crucial role in encouraging more sustainable habits.
2. Take community action:
Collaboration within coworking spaces is what sets them apart from other working models. Encouraging the community to take small actions like switching off lights and computers can make a significant impact on energy consumption. Generator Hub in the UK plans to run on 100% renewable energy by 2030 and empowers its community to make sustainable choices.
3. Establish sustainable partnerships:
Forming partnerships with sustainable businesses can contribute to a workspace’s sustainability efforts. Good Coworking collaborated with Usefull, a zero waste shop, to eliminate single-use plastics. This partnership earned the workspace SUPER certification and attracted like-minded people and companies to the community.
4. Design green buildings for greater well-being:
The environmental impact of the building itself is crucial to consider. Implementing green building principles, such as incorporating natural lighting and energy-efficient systems, can improve both sustainability and well-being. Good Coworking, for example, installed solar panels and created a central green courtyard. Energy efficiency reduces energy consumption and lowers costs.
5. Revitalize neighborhoods:
Repurposing existing buildings instead of constructing new ones is a more sustainable approach. The restoration and renovation of old buildings can contribute to biodiversity conservation. Additionally, encouraging active transportation, such as walking or cycling, can reduce energy consumption and promote a sense of community.
These five sustainable practices can help coworking spaces make a positive impact on the planet. Educating the community, taking collective action, establishing partnerships, designing green buildings, and revitalizing neighborhoods are key steps towards a more sustainable future.
Simple actions that workspaces can start implementing include eliminating single-use plastics, promoting education and signage, reducing paper use, engaging in energy audits, and creating baseline carbon footprints.
By adopting these practices, coworking spaces can demonstrate their commitment to sustainability and contribute to a greener future. Together, we can make a difference in protecting the planet.