The City of Cape Town has recently launched the latest version of its ‘Smart Office Handbook and Toolkit’, a practical and relevant guide to assist businesses in creating healthier and more sustainable workplaces.
Many businesses and organisations want to implement sustainability programmes, but they are not sure where to start or, how much they are able to do and according to the City, their handbook and toolkit provides a “comprehensive and user-friendly package that enables businesses, government and non-profit organisations, to implement effective sustainability programmes in the workplace”.
“We have prioritised the revision of our Smart Office Handbook so that we can advise businesses on the most relevant guidelines for greening their offices and workplaces” comments the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Spatial Planning and Environment, Alderman Marian Nieuwoudt.
“Aside from providing practical tips for creating healthier environments, our aim is to provide a guide that could spark ideas among residents on the positive impact sustainable practices will have on their business and the environments in which they operate”.
Going ‘green’ is no longer a trend. It is the responsibility of every business, big or small, to apply the principles of sustainability, regardless of whether you are working from home or an office she says.
“Buildings are a priority area for addressing climate change, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and building city resilience. To this end, in its own operations, the City is committed to ensuring that all new facilities owned, occupied, and developed by the municipality are net-zero carbon by 2030. In the same way, and where it is possible, we intend to ensure the same for existing facilities. We encourage other organisations to follow suit”.
“Let us act together in creating a carbon neutral, climate-resilient city,” says the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Energy and Climate Change, Councillor Phindile Maxiti.
The new handbook covers eight key topics:
- The basics of greening your office.
- Energy efficiency.
- Waste reduction.
- Water conservation.
- Environmental and social impacts and,
- Sustainable development in business and beyond the office, such as green buildings and greener events.
Useful supporting resources have also been added to the toolkit, which offer scoping eco-audit sheets, educational posters, and reminder decals for around the office.
The City will be running relevant training programmes for staff and the public on how to implement the sustainability strategies outlined in the handbook.