Becoming Green and Sustainable


Greening is having more care for the environment. Greening is a process, as well as a state of mind, and it calls for taking action. Greening involves a spirit of reciprocity.

Sustainability means meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Practicing sustainability means using materials in continuous cycles, using renewable resources, and having less impact on the planet. Sustainable practices translate to caring for the environment.

Conserve Energy and Water

  1. Use high efficiency pre-rinse spray nozzles at the dish cleaning area, flow restrictors on restroom faucets, and ultra low-flow or dual-flush toilets (your water company or utility may provide rebates or free equipment).
  2. Replace old 1-1/2″ diameter T12 fluorescent lamps with efficient, 1″ diameter 800-series T8 lamps; and use Energy Star compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) instead of incandescent bulbs in storerooms, break rooms, offices, wall sconces, kitchen exhaust hoods and walk-in refrigerators (utility rebates may be available).
  3. Reduce, reuse, recycle
    Buy products in returnable, reusable or recyclable containers.
  4. Practical Advice
    • Replace your incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs.
    • Wash Clothes on the cold setting
    • Combine your errands for the week to one day (save time and money).
    • Turn thermostat down
    • Find recycling information and maybe even make a little money on
      on the side.
    • Stop by the local farmer’s market to get your produce (i.e. buy local
    • Buy a canvas bag for all your shopping
    • Buy reusable coffee filters
  5. To conserve water do the following
    • Install a low-flow shower-head
    • Wash dishes by hand (instead of running dishwasher, or only run it
      when it is packed)
    • Turn the water off when you are brushing your teeth and fill your
      sink with water before washing dishes are ways to easily cut down
      on water usage.
  6. Plan your purchases — get smaller more fuel efficient cars, buy energy-efficient appliances and electronics all of which are better
    than getting the biggest-baddest thing available.
  7. Only wash clothes when the load is full (or remember to adjust the
    water settings)
  8. Take public transportation, carpool, walk or ride bikes for travel
  9. Try to work within a 3 mile radius of your home (easily reachable by
  10. Buy used clothes or clothes that are fair-trade or organic.
  11. Use earth-friendly detergents and soaps

Five strategies to green your office.

For companies looking to do the right thing without having to spend lots of green, consider these low- and no-cost strategies:

  1. 1. Reorganize workspaces around natural light sources to curb usage of costly fluorescent and incandescent lighting.
  2. 2. Find new uses for existing office resources (e.g. furniture, artwork, etc.) in a workspace redesign.
  3. 3. Opt for ENERGY STAR® appliances (e.g. computers, printers, monitors, etc.).
    4. Install dimmers and sensors on lights that turn off automatically when an office is unoccupied.
  4. 5. Install timers to shut off air-conditioning and heaters when offices are unoccupied.