Consumers want to be green, but they expect companies to lead the way, according to a Stanford global survey. The good news is that taking some easy steps towards a greener dental practice can also reduce ongoing overhead costs!
Here are 5 (easy) things you can do NOW:
Traditional incandescent lights only use 10% of their energy to produce light. The other 90% is released as heat, making incandescent lights a powerful power waster.
Buy new bulbs. Energy Star certified light bulbs last 10-25 times longer and save $30-$80 each in electricity costs over their lifetime.
The average office employee tosses more than 175 lbs. of paper a year. Between patient forms and disposable cups, tree wasting is anything but paper-thin at dental practices.
Pick paper wisely. You don’t have to completely eliminate paper from the office. Start small— print and copy on both sides of the paper, and use recycled content paper. Explore paperwork alternatives, too! Thanks to several apps, it’s easy for patients to fill out forms on tablets.
Batteries have hazardous properties. And specialty batteries contain mercury and other metals.
Reduce with recharged. Consider switching from single-use batteries to rechargeable ones. You can recharge them up to 100 times! Regardless of which batteries you purchase, remember to recycle them.
U.S. offices waste billions of dollars per year by failing to properly shut down their computers each day. And think about all of the computers used in your office—front desk computers, waiting room PCs, monitors for digital x-rays, etc.
Shut it down! Choose sleep over a screensaver. During the workday, set all computers to go to sleep automatically if they’re idle for 3-5 minutes. This cuts energy use up to 70%! Finally, shut down all computers completely at the end of every day.
Surprisingly, almost 20% of your annual water consumption flushes down the drain in the bathroom, making the toilet the biggest H2O abuser in your dental office.
Find the right flusher. WaterSense labeled toilets are an option that can conserve up to 13,000 gallons of water per year, according to the EPA.
Whether your practice is light green, dark green or somewhere in between…let your patients know. Once you’ve accomplished the sustainable starter steps, check out ecodentistry.org to take your go-green game to the next level.