What is Green Office?

WWF Green Office is a tool for systematic and productive environmental management.

An environmental management system and certificate for offices

Green Office includes a model that you can use to build a suitable environmental management system for your organisation, allowing you to reduce your workplace’s carbon footprint and use natural resources sustainably.

The only way to find the biggest improvement needs is to assess your initial situation. The self-assessment of the Green Office environmental management system can be used to discover the causes of your office’s harmful environmental impacts. After the assessment, you can use the results to prepare an annual plan, also known as your environmental programme. The Green Office comes with everything prepared for you to set objectives for your workplace and measure and monitor their achievement.

Once your office’s environmental management system is ready and the office has been audited, your organisation will be awarded with the WWF Green Office certificate. The certificate indicates that the environmental management system of the organisation is implemented in compliance with external criteria, and that the organisation is committed to continuously improving its activities. In addition, the environmental certificate lets your customers and stakeholders know that you are really taking effective action.

 

Changes you can make as a Green Office:

  • Enhance the environmental management of your organisation.
  • Make your environmental work more goal-oriented and measurable.
  • Reduce the emissions of your workplace and use natural resources sustainably.
  • Communicate sustainability in a convincing manner.
  • Engage the work community in environmental action.

Environmental management system for enterprises, the public sector and other operators

Did you know...

The idea of Green Office was born already in the late 1990s. It officially saw the light of day in 2002, when the Green Office programme was launched. The goal has remained unchanged since day one: to offer offices effective ways and concrete actions to mitigate negative environmental impacts.

Seitsemän eri ikäistä ja näköistä ihmistä seisoo rennosti rivissä ja katsoo suoraan kameraan nauraen.

The WWF Green Office network in Finland currently consists of 143 organisations. There are a total of 382 offices with 59 000 employees (Numbers: May 2019).

The Green Office environmental management system is suitable for operators of very different sizes as it can be scaled for both smaller and larger workplaces. The workplaces in the Green Office network are all office environments and share the will to work sustainably.

The network includes specialist companies, universities and universities of applied sciences, head offices, ministries and government agencies, associations and other operators.

Green Office is a part of WWF, the most influential environmental organisation in the world

We want to highlight that Green Office does not require you to have any environmental expertise of your own; the will to act sustainably is enough. You will receive the support and expertise of the world’s leading environmental organisation, as WWF Green Office is a part of WWF Finland.

What are common sources of environmental impacts in offices?

WWF Green Office work is built around seven themes that are the most significant sources of environmental impacts in offices. We will help you to assess which Green Office themes your organisation should focus on and when. Your environmental management system can emphasise different themes in different years, or you can include actions related to each theme from the start.

The WWF Green Office themes are:

  1.       Management

  2.       Communications and engagement

  3.       Energy and water

  4.       Procurement

  5.       Recycling, sorting and cleaning

  6.       Travel

  7.       Food

Management

Sustainability can only be improved if the company’s management is committed to it. With Green Office, you can build an active, goal-oriented way to promote environmental issues in your organisation.

Communications and engagement

Regular communications are required to engage the entire work community in sustainability. For this purpose, we have collected the Green Office material bank that contains all the right content for your company. After you have received the certificate, you can also make use of the WWF Green Office logo in your external communications and marketing.

Energy and water

Energy consumption is usually the greatest source of environmental impacts in an office. Green Office will help you to improve your property’s energy efficiency, for example by reducing electricity consumption and taking the origin of energy into account.

Procurement

Wise procurement decisions will make the market more sustainable, and they will help you generate less waste and avoid overconsumption. Green Office will help you to select sustainable products and partners.

Recycling, sorting and cleaning

By recycling and sorting waste efficiently, you will participate in utilising existing materials. With Green Office’s support, you can reduce the overconsumption of natural resources and enable circular economy solutions.

Travel

An organisation can decrease a large part of their emissions by improving their methods of travelling. For instance, we will help you to specify principles of sustainable travelling for work-related travel.

Food

Vegetarian food has lower environmental impacts than meat and dairy products almost without exception. Green Office will guide you to choose sustainable vegetarian products for your work-related events and coffee breaks.

Environmental efforts are needed at workplaces

Did you know...

The concrete actions included in WWF Green Office allow you to contribute towards achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

Many companies are using natural resources unsustainably. For example, the use of coal and fossil fuels is destroying natural habitats and accelerating climate change. It is crucial for the future of our planet that also companies and organisations participate in the prevention of the climate crisis and adapting to it.

To mitigate climate change, greenhouse gas emissions will have to be reduced globally by 80 per cent by the year 2050. The primary target of WWF’s climate work is to limit the warming of the climate to 1.5 degrees Celsius and to mitigate the risks caused by climate change to both people and the environment.

The most important means of climate change mitigation are energy conservation and energy efficiency, increasing the use of renewable energies, and halting deforestation. All of these are things that any office can affect by improving their premises and the habits of the work community.

Our current overconsumption and way of life are not just threatening the climate, but also biodiversity. We are demanding much more of Earth than it can produce. The consumption of energy and natural resources has reduced world biodiversity by more than 50 per cent in four decades, with a decrease of as much as 60 per cent in the tropical areas. This has meant the extinction of many species and their habitats.

The purchasing choices of your organisation will help to create a more sustainable market, and you can play your part in stopping the cycle of overconsumption.

Sustainability as a part of the daily activities at your workplace

A complete model, diverse tools, engaging communications materials and the support of WWF’s experts will aid you in making environmental activities a part of your work community’s daily activities.

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Sustainability as a part of the daily activities at your workplace

A complete model, diverse tools, engaging communications materials and the support of WWF’s experts will aid you in making environmental activities a part of your work community’s daily activities.