Office Depot Kicks Off Small Business 'Green Office Makeover' Contest

Companies in the greater Miami area can win a $4,000 greening package in order to raise awareness about green office practices among small and medium businesses.

Office Depot, in partnership with the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce, announced the "Green Makeover Contest" as part of the groups' Earth Day efforts. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the April 22nd celebration of the environment.

"Today's small and medium-size businesses realize the importance of tapping into the marketplace trend towards greener products and services," Yalmaz Siddiqui, Director of Environmental Strategy for Office Depot, said in a statement. "With the Green Office Makeover Contest, Office Depot is hoping to identify and reward the businesses who are already growing greener and taking advantage of the growth of green."

Companies that want to win the makeover can apply through the Miami Chamber of Commerce's website by submitting an entry form and a 250-word essay. The prize, worth more than $4,000 includes GreenGuard-certified office furniture, Energy Star-labeled technology products, green office supplies and a green business consultation with Siddiqui.

{related_content}"We are committed to educating our membership on sustainable practices and will continue our outreach to the business community," Barry E. Johnson, the president and CEO of the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce, said in a statement. "Programs like these are essential to our efforts; and with the support of Office Depot, the Chamber is not only able to increase awareness, but also reward those who utilize green business practices."

Although SMEs are small in size, they're large in number, and often limited in the time and resources they have to dedicate to cutting down their environmental impacts. As a result, the federal government has been promoting energy efficiency efforts for small businesses in recent years, and in the U.K., the Carbon Trust has doubled the amount of loans it will offer to reduce their CO2 emissions.

The Office Depot Green Makeover contest runs through Earth Day, April 22, 2010, and the winner will be announced on May 12. More details and application materials are available on MiamiChamber.com.