Eco-Living Magazine

The College Campus Goes Green

Posted on the 06 May 2011 by Alison_wood @midnight_eden

The College Campus Goes GreenAs an increasingly larger portion of our society takes steps to move toward a more “green friendly” planet, more and more businesses, organizations, institutions and individuals are heeding the call to improve their carbon footprints.

Believe it or not, even Las Vegas resorts are jumping on the bandwagon of adopting green practices. But remember, businesses aren’t just going green because it’s the right thing to do – they’re doing it because it saves them money!

Along similar lines, the higher education sector is currently utilizing green energy programs to save themselves millions of dollars each year by reducing the cost of energy bills, rent and materials. Colleges and Universities around the country have adopted green campaigns, helping them to protect the environment and attract eco-conscious students all at the same time.

While there are many simple ways to “go green”, one of the most effective steps a university can take to turn themselves green is to take a full inventory of current practices. Once that is completed, the school will know where they need to improve things and can establish what needs to be done.

A great way to for a college campus to become more environmentally friendly would be to follow the lead of distance learning universities and offer online education degree programs.  This would allow the colleges to have a larger student capacity without increasing their physical footprint, costing them investments in construction, rent, utilities and materials. Going online also helps reduce the amount of pollution produced as students would not have to drive to attend class, meaning that cost-savings comes with the added bonus of positive PR, bolstering marketing campaigns and the school’s public image.

In addition to creating an online program, it is important to make the traditional campus greener. An important (and easy) place to start is setting up recycling bins around campus. Most students will recycle if given the opportunity, but only if trash receptacles are available will they throw their recyclables away. Schools should make sure to clearly identify the recycling bins and to alert students that they’ve been deployed around campus.

Another great way to reduce your carbon footprint is to offer or to promote ride sharing. Start a ride sharing program at the school to encourage students to help protect our precious earth. Not only will the program reduce the amount of pollution in the air, it will also be a great money-saving incentive. Given current gas prices, students will likely jump at the chance to save money by carpooling.

Universities should also look into installing solar panels, as going self-sufficient is the absolute best way to protect the planet while also protecting yourself. By generating solar power, you’ll be able to save money and create clean power, without having to pay for distribution or access costs, saving significant amounts of cash. Harnessing the sun’s energy is an incredibly resourceful, cost-effective and earth-friendly way that universities can do their part in helping save the planet, cut costs, and bolster their community relations. It’s a no-brainer!

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