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Green Tips

by Mog,Justin M last modified Jul 24, 2014 08:37 PM

Ideas for living, working and playing more sustainably!

Be an ENERGY star!

Turn it Off!
    • Drive Less! Walk, bike, take the TARC bus (free with UofL ID), carpool, or vanpool whenever possible. You'll stay fit, make friends, save thousands of dollars per year, and drastically reduce your energy use and planetary impact.
    • Avoid the trip all together: Rather than polluting the planet and wasting fuel, money & time to get everyone in the same room, consider holding virtual meetings and classes through Teleconference, Videoconference, or the Blackboard Collaborate platform (free to UofL employees!).
    • Keep tires properly inflated (efficiency is reduced 1% for every 3 PSI that tires are under-inflated).
    • Don't let engines idle longer than about 30 seconds. Idling longer wastes fuel and an idling engine produces more pollution than a moving vehicle.
    • Set computers to "sleep" or “hibernate” when idle (under Control Panel > Power Options). Especially important for desktop models.
    • Always shut down your computer when you're done. Any system updates can be made when you reboot.
    • Turn off any peripheral devices (printers, monitors, speakers, scanners, etc.) when you're done. Just plug them all into one power strip and click it off, or use a "smart" power strip which automatically shut off power to peripherals when the computer shuts down.
    • Do not run a screen saver. They waste energy. Instead, set your monitor to enter power-saving mode when idle.
    • Turn off lights, computers and equipment off when vacating a room.
    • Unplug chargers, TVs, computers, and other equipment when not in use (many consume electricity even when the unit is turned off!). An easy solution is to put everything on one power strip and click it all off when you're done.
    • Set thermostats moderately (<70°F winter / >75°F summer) & adjust 10°F when vacating a room.
    • Replace incandescent light bulbs with more efficient compact fluorescent lamps (CFL).
    • Purchase only efficient Energy Star® rated appliances, electronics & computers.
    • In labs, always keep the fume hood sash closed while not in use.
    • Use a clothesline instead of energy hogging clothes dryers.
Waste Reduction

Reduce WASTE!

    • 42 Ways to Not Make Trash
    • Stop wasting money on bottled water! Refill your bottle for free with Louisville's award-winning tap water instead of trashing the planet.
    • Cut paper use in half by always printing or copying on both sides.
    • Go Paperless! Instead of printing, use free electronic file-sharing on campus through SharePoint, Blackboard, or publicly available services such as GoogleDocs or Dropbox.
      - Instructors: Get the mobile app for paperless exams!
    • Gaia Movement - Used Clothing Donation BinsDonate unwanted items to charities (like the Gaia Movement's light green bins around campus), thrift stores, or non-profit organizations; or have a yard sale! UofL employees can give these items new life through UofL Surplus or our online Property Exchange listings.
    • At the checkout, refuse new plastic or paper bags and bring your own reusable shopping bags (available for purchase on campus for under $2 at The Nest, Simply To Go, and Quick Zone).
    • At mealtimes, use reusable mugs, cups, utensils, cloth napkins and towels rather than disposables. Save 50 cents with a reusable mug every time you fill up on coffee, tea, or fountain drinks at any UofL dining facility.
    • Switch to rechargeable batteries rather than toxic disposables.
    • Avoid excess packaging by bringing your own bags and buying in bulk whenever possible. UofL employees can reuse packing materials like boxes and bubble wrap through our online Property Exchange listings.
    • Buy pre-owned items whenever possible or new items with post-consumer recycled content.
Recycling is a breeze at UofL!
    • Recycle all kinds of paper, cardboard, plastic, metal, and glass - all in the same bin at UofL!
    • Recycle computers, TVs, E-waste: 636 Meriwether Ave. MetroCall: 311. Home Depot recycles CFLs. UofL employees can recycle departmental e-waste through our E-scrap program and our Toner/Ink Cartridge recycling program.
    • Take hazardous materials (paints, solvents, chemicals, fluorescent bulbs, etc.) to Haz Bin 7501 Grade Lane. UofL employees should contact the Department of Environmental Health and Safety for pick-up, exchange, or responsible disposal of hazardous materials.
    • Green Your Laboratory to reduce toxins and waste:
      1. Inventory Control: Keep chemical inventories updated to minimize duplicate ordering. Chemical purchases can also be reduced by borrowing and sharing chemicals between labs. DEHS offers a Chemical Exchange Program (CHEMEX) for chemicals that are unopened or partially used.
      2. Product substitution: Review procedures with an eye to eliminating the use of hazardous chemicals by replacing with a less hazardous or non-hazardous alternative.
      3. Replace mercury-containing thermometers with non-toxic substitutes.
      4. Reuse empty chemical bottles to collect chemical waste.
      5. Switch from disposal plastics items (beakers, pipettes, culture dishes, tubes, etc) to reusable glassware that can be autoclaved or disinfected/inactivated with a mild chemical solution (most inactivations effectively use 10% bleach, which can be sink disposed).

    • Compost your food scraps and organic wastes in one of the Garden Commons composting bins behind the Cultural Center, or start composting at home!

Eat better FOOD!

    • Eat locally grown produce, dairy, and meats; and locally made foods. Eating locally saves the resources needed to ship and preserve food while supporting local jobs, farms and businesses. Find local delights through our Food page, including:
        → UofL's Belknap Farmers' Market – Thursdays 3:30-6:30 (May-Oct) at 3rd & Brandeis in front of The Ville Grill
        → Gray Street Farmers' Market – Thursdays 10:30-2:00 (May-Oct), 400 block E. Gray St. (HSC)
        → Find the market closest to you: Louisville Farmers Market Directory
        → Get 100% locally-sourced food year-round just blocks from Belknap campus at The Root Cellar (Kentucky & Swan)
        → Subscribe to a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program
        → Grow your own in one of UofL's Campus Gardens
        → Ask for local at stores, restaurants and UofL Dining venues
        → Request local food when ordering catering for events. Local food caterers listed here.
    • Eat less meat and animal products, substituting with plant protein (beans, nuts, soy products, etc.) to improve your health, eliminate cruelty from your diet, and reduce your environmental impact as much as ten times.
      → Get started by trying Meatless Mondays or Meatless Mornings
      UofL Dining: A Vegetarian’s Guide
    • Eat organic, fair trade, grass-fed or plant-based products to minimize abuse to the environment, people & animals.

Conserve WATER!

    • Don't run water unnecessarily while brushing you teeth, shaving, or washing dishes.
    • Report leaks in faucets, valves, fixtures, or toilets to Physical Plant immediately for repair: Repair request form here. Call 852-6241.
    • Replace water fixtures with low-flow shower heads, faucets and/or toilets.

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