This page is dedicated to the folks working in offices across campus who make sustainable decisions every day.
New Faculty Resource
The Green Office
Hey faculty--we have a new resource for you! EcoTeach is a new environmental and sustainability curriculum website that was designed by Peggy McKay ('10) to encourage collaboration and innovation.
Want to make your office more environmentally sustainable? Try these tips.
Write a statement of commitment to sustainability for your office.
- Designate a green representative or team for your office to be in charge of programming.
- Talk to those with whom you share an office about the importance of going green.
- Decide on your goals as an office and how to implement them.
- Encourage the office to start with the easiest tasks and behavioral changes, and work your way up to the more difficult ones.
- Run incentive programs to encourage changes in behavior.
- Create promotional materials to display around the office.
Solid Waste: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle
- Cancel multiple subscriptions and share one copy.
- Stop junk mail.
- Share a phone book.
- Print double sided.
- Don’t print e-mails unless absolutely necessary.
- Centralize printing— personal printers encourage wastefulness. When there is one printer for the whole office (or floor), you’re more likely to think about whether you really need to print it.
- When color is not important, print in gray scale (monochrome).
- Use a ceramic mug for your coffee. The Union Café gives a discount for a ceramic or travel mugs!
- Bring your lunch in reusable containers.
- Use scrap papers that you no longer need for taking notes.
- Use and reuse interdepartmental envelopes for mail that stays on campus.
- Recycle all types of paper: printer paper, junk mail, magazines, brochures, manila folders, envelopes.
- Plastic, glass and aluminum should always be recycled.
- Printer cartridges, plastic grocery bags and batteries can be recycled in the Union.
- Designate a box for these items in your office and have someone take it to the Union weekly.
- Computers, electronics and other office equipment can be recycled through companies like Office Max.
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Considerations for choosing a supplier
- Does the company have a policy to reduce and prevent pollution?
- Consider the cost of the item over its lifetime: raw material extraction, manufacturing, packaging, transport, energy consumption while in use, maintenance, disposal.
- How is the company actively working toward sustainability?
- Give preference to reusable items and those made from recycled material.
What to buy and where to buy it
Turn it off!
- Turn off the lights when you are not in your office.
- Use natural light augmented with a desk lamp instead of the overhead lights.
- Have meetings outside when it’s nice.
- Plug appliances into a power strip, and flip it off when not in use. Many electronics draw electricity even when they are turned off—this is called a "phantom load." Power strips don’t have phantom loads.
- Turn off your computer at night; this can save up to $70 per computer per year.
- Turn off your printer, fax machine and copy machine at night, this can save over $100 per machine per year.
- Use compact fluorescent light bulbs instead of traditional ones. The newest technology produces high-quality light just like traditional bulbs.
- In the summer, keep curtains closed during the day and open at night; in the winter, keep curtains open during the day and closed at night.
Specific Office/Room Energy Resources
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- Bring a water filter to work instead of buying water bottles.
- Walk or ride a bike to work.
- Carpool to work and lunch when you can.