Burning Calories while Saving Energy

There are several ways to save energy that we can incorporate into many facets of our everyday lives, some of which more obvious than others.  Whether it’s something as simple as turning off a light when it’s not needed, or carpooling to work, the opportunity is always there to make our lives just a little bit greener. 

 Working at the Softchoice Head Office in Toronto, employees have the ability to take advantage of the Softchoice gym, an opportunity that many take advantage of.  Unlimited and free access to an employee gym is a great perk to have.  Not only does it give one the convenience to hit the weights or elliptical whenever you choose, but it also demonstrates that your company is promoting a healthy and active lifestyle.  Health is important…so is the environment. Regular exercise is one of these facets in our everyday lives that we can make just a little bit greener with a few easily-developed habits. 

 One of the easiest changes to make is to simply stop buying packs of bottled water for your workout.  Save your money!  Why create more plastic waste?  Over 60 million plastic water bottles are disposed improperly everyday.  Now, I’m not saying that you should stop drinking water while you exercise, staying hydrated is important.  But next time you go to the gym, bring a re-usable water bottle.  [Read more…]

Sometimes we all need a little reminder

I was leaving the Softchoice gym today when I noticed the new signs near all of the light switches that were put up by the Green Team. Some may think a sign is not necessary (and maybe even a waste of paper), but you’d be surprised how many times I’ve walked into the gym to lights, TVs and the stereo running without anyone being in there.

At home, since I pay my own power bills, I find myself so much more committed to turning things off. I never leave the TV on when I’m not watching it. Before I leave the house, I do a last sweep to turn off all the lights. Sometimes even when I’m cooking, I’ll even turn off the stove before the dish is done cooking since I know that they’ll still be some heat as it slowly cools down.

[Read more…]

Rollin’ in the green: Sustainability at our Mid Year Meeting

A fact that we all know is true is that all hotels, whether one star or six stars have giant environmental footprints. I’ll explain more about this as we go.

But first, let’s fly to Phoenix.

As most sales conferences go, the last thing most people are ever thinking about is environmentally friendly practices. Everyone, except for Softchoice’s amazing event planning team that is. Why am so excited about the events team thinking about being green during mid-year? Because they actually pulled it off! How, you ask? By hooking up with one of the greenest resorts , the events team was able to put together an incredible environmentally friendly conference.

The Sheraton Wildhorse Pass & Spa is famous for it’s sustainability practices and exceptional quality. The meetings and banquet rooms are designed for the highest levels of efficiency depending on the kind of event you are hosting.  Some of the green iniatives the hotel had in place were:

  • Air-conditioning in meeting rooms is determined by the status of the room, meaning that when they are not in use, the A/C is  not on.
  • The facility does a lot to reduce overall waste, but not having plastic cups or paper cups on site and using glasses instead. [Read more…]

Things to turn off before going away for the long weekend

If you’re like me every long weekend brings either a trip up to the cottage or to visit relatives out of town. As a homeowner you make sure your house is all locked up and secure. But what we forget to think about are the items that we leave plugged in. Most people think because an appliance is turned off it does not draw any energy.

The truth is they still do draw power, and in some cases they can draw up to 10 to 15 watts per device. Recent studies indicate that in the US alone, appliances left plugged in or on standby add $3 Billion in annual energy costs to US households.

You might think its appliances like coffee makers or toasters that are the biggest offenders for this, but in reality it is your home entertainment systems that are sucking the most energy when off. On average, a home entertainment center will use anywhere from 50 to 80 watts in just standby mode.

The worst piece of equipment is [Read more…]

The 3-second secret to being a green hero

In my 4 years of experience as sustainability manager at Softchoice, I’ve met hundreds of people who are really passionate about energy efficiency. And I mean really, really passionate.

But you know what? I’ve realized you don’t need to be a hyper active green-thumb to help out with this important movement. It doesn’t matter what your day job is — from IT workers to salespeople to finance gurus — you can make a big difference with a very small, very simple, first step.

This “first step” is easy, it won’t cost you a dime and it only takes three seconds — but it’s very important nonetheless.

Can you guess what it is? [Read more…]

Walking the talk on EPEAT and Energy Star products

Since the launch of Softchoice worlds first searchable EPEAT and Energy Star product registry, Softchoice has given IT purchasers the ability to easily identify and evaluate more than 2,300 unique products based on their environmental attributes. With 4,800 ENERGY STAR certified products to our website bringing our total roster of certified green IT products to more than 7,100. [Read more…]