Handy manual

THE GREEN OFFICE MANUAL·Earthscan publications, London· Price Rs 2488.90

 
By Poornima
Last Updated: Saturday 04 July 2015

the book is a guide for organisations and individuals interested to make their offices "green". The author, Lesley Millet, a sales and marketing professional, is an expert in environmental management.

Office activities use energy and other resources, produce waste and add to carbon dioxide emissions. But they can contribute to improving the environment through better management practices and efficient use of resources.

In the last 20 years in Europe, environmental legislations have grown from a few specific measures to comprehensive programmes of regulation. Over 200 regulations have been passed by the European Union covering atmospheric, water and soil pollution, waste management, chemicals and biotechnology safeguards, product standards, environmental impact assessments and conservation. The new environmental legislations have considerable power. Failing to comply can damage an organisations' reputation. In some cases the owners may even face prosecution.

The principle of making the polluter pay is being implemented through taxes and duties on pollution. Reduction of waste disposal costs through recycling and improving resource usage can minimise costs. On an average 70 per cent of office waste can be recycled.

A further development in environmental legislation is the Production Responsibility Obligation Implementation. This requires organisations producing about 50 tonnes of packaging to recover and recycle a percentage of their packaging.

But broadening the responsibilities of organisations through legislations may not achieve considerable success in combating pollution but can be a costly proposition for organisations who do not respond to these trends. This book has practical guidelines for waste reduction and implementation of environmental initiatives. The author has supported the guidelines with subjective case studies which enhance the practical value of the book.

The book revolves around planned approaches and guidelines providing information and support at each stage. It would have been interesting if it had given a brief review of the kinds of pollution and pollutants which are contributing to the vast environmental degradation and its impact in the coming millennium.

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