As college students head back to campus or prepare to move into their dorms for the first time, there’s bound to be a lot of excitement for everyone involved. A new school year signals a fresh start — and that happens to be something our planet needs, too. As more young people make everyday decisions to preserve our world, it’s only natural that colleges and universities support and further those efforts with eco-friendly campus initiatives. In fact, October is Campus Sustainability Month, so now is the perfect time to launch some new programs to make your college a bit more eco-friendly. But how exactly can you promote sustainability at your school? Here are just a few easy ways to get started.
Create Campus-Wide Recycling Initiatives
As municipalities across the nation are being forced to cut down on their recycling programs, your college or university can set a sustainable example by establishing recycling efforts across the campus. Your school can secure an agreement with a local recycling provider and determine which materials can be dropped off at their facility. Then, obtain and properly label bins and distribute them to areas with high foot traffic. You’ll also need to designate staff or a volunteer team to collect recyclables on a weekly basis.
Install Electric Car Charging Stations
In the U.S., roughly 80% of people living in owner-occupied housing have access to garages or carports, which makes it easy for an electric vehicle owner to install a personal charging station. At a university, however, students typically use shared parking at a dormitory or apartment. As a result, most students cannot bring their electric vehicles to campus because they cannot conveniently charge their cars overnight at home or during the school day. The increase in gas cars means an increase in campus carbon emissions and air pollution.
Fortunately, campuses that want to decrease carbon emissions have an easy solution: commercial-grade electric car charging stations for students and faculty. Colleges that install charging stations can serve the entire campus community, from students to university employees. Your EV charging stations can support your campus sustainability plan and create goodwill among visitors!
Cut Down on Disposable, Single Use Items
As states rush to eliminate plastic bags and straws, colleges can stay ahead of the curve by reducing their reliance on single-use plastics and other disposable products. Encourage students and staff to switch to reusable water bottles with your school’s logo. Instead of using plastic bags in the campus bookstore, offer paper or reusable cloth totes. With thoughtful actions, you can make waste reduction part of your campus sustainability plan.
Earn LEED Certifications For Green Buildings
In addition to installing EV charging stations to improve energy efficiency, you can also reduce your environmental impact by going green in your campus buildings. Whether you’re renovating old structures or building brand new ones, you can emphasize the importance of green building practices. Work with contractors who utilize sustainable materials and use ENERGYSTAR certified products. You can even use the US Green Building Council’s LEED program to get your structure certified as a sustainable, energy efficient building.
By decreasing your school’s use of single use products, implementing recycling programs, installing electric car charging stations, and pursuing green building plans, your college or university can make a real difference in this world. To learn more about how our EV stations can allow you to reach your green goals, contact us today.
Colleges and universities have already started to reduce campus emissions with SemaConnect EV charging stations. Click here to read more about five campuses who are making a difference in their communities.