“I pledge to preserve, conserve, and protect the world’s natural resources to the best of my ability. Specifically, I will follow the three R’s of Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle in my local environment by doing as many of the following as I can, and I will encourage others to do so…”
This pledge began at Carthage College, Kenosha, WI, in October 2010. It is intended to serve as a model for college and university students and everyone else. Please feel free modify the text to fit your group or community and pass it along.
To view the rest of the pledge, visit Carthage Sustainability.
When one ton of plastic bags is reused or recycled, the energy equivalent of 11 barrels of oil is saved! By bringing your own bag to the grocery store, you can save thousands of plastic bags from ending up in landfills, or even worse in ecosystems where they can harm living creatures.
Look for alternate uses for the bags you’ve collected
- Old bags make great in-car trash containers.
- Use them as shoe protectors in the garden.
- Re-use them to clean up kitty litter, or to pick up dog droppings when walking your pet.
- Use them in your smaller waste bins around the house.
- Fill a few with shredded paper and tie them off for cheap, reusable packing materials. They’re also a handy way to maintain the shape of your favorite tote.
- Cut a slit in your bags and use them to protect clothes from dust, moths, and other pests.
- Take them with you for easy disposal of diapers.
To see other tips, visit Valparaiso’s sustainability page.
There are currently eight ELCA schools that seek to promote sustainable living in community by designating on-campus houses.
Here is the list of links to active houses and residence hall floors that dedicate themselves to living a more environmentally conscious lifestyle:and residence hall floors as “sustainable”. The students living in these houses and dorms make a commitment to improve their daily practices in a way that will reduce their impact on the environment.
Capital University is practicing sustainability by reducing their amount of paper waste. That’s why they started the Going Green Print & Copy Program. Capital took a look at how much students were using printers and copiers and decided to allot a $50.00 – or 500 page – print and copy credit to each student per semester. This limit is projected to reduce excessive printing and save Capital over 120,000 printed pages each semester.
Take a look Capital’s printing tips!
Think Before You Print
You can help Capital preserve the environment and save energy with these printing tips.
Learn to review and edit documents online, so you only have to print a final copy.
Use email, CDs, or flash drives to distribute documents when possible.
Print on both sides of the paper.
Reuse before you recycle. Use the back of waste paper as scratch paper.
Recycle waste paper when you’re finished.
Concordia Moorhead has created an interactive map which shows sustainability-related initiatives and features that are found throughout the Concordia Moorhead campus. These include: experiential learning sites, institutional initiatives, landscaping, student initiatives, transportation, and energy. This map allows users to click on the images in the description for a link to more information on Concordia’s website. To view this map click here.
In an effort to reduce the waste associated with move-out this semester, Luther Sustainability has partnered with several Decorah-area organizations to decrease waste and give back to the community. Starting the Friday before finals there will be a clearly marked donation room in each residence hall where students can donate unwanted items. Furniture, clothing, laundry detergent, rugs, working electronics, and posters or other reusable room decorations will all be donated to local thrift shops. The Decorah First Lutheran Food Pantry will receive all unopened non-perishable food. Redeemable glass containers will also be collected, with all money to benefit the a local organization that assists people with disabilities called the Spectrum Network. The goal is that the only things going in the dumpsters are items not able to be repurposed or reused. Helpers will staff waste stations near residence halls three times each day from Wednesday to Sunday during finals week to assist with waste diversion and answer questions about what can and cannot be donated. For more information on Luther’s waste-reduction initiatives, click here.
Wittenberg College has hosted a series of speakers for students, faculty, staff, and the community of Sprigfield to attend this past year. According to Nancy Flinchbaugh, the series coordinator: “The series is the result of a group of Springfield citizens coming together with the feeling of “we need to do something” just after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.” Themes for this year focus on community-based research and outreach conducted by Wittenberg scientists and students, which support sustainable decision making for the local area.The Global Education series provides exposure to other cultures and world events to increase understanding and hopefully encouraging respect of the current issues. Topics that have been addressed in the 2016 Spring Semester include: “Wittenberg Forges New Ground with Collaborative Sustainability Efforts”, “An Indian/Hindu Perspective on Earth Issues: Deforestation, Pollution and Hope”, “Climate Change and the Global Community: What’s Happening and What Can We Do? A Muslim Perspective”, and “Community Efforts to Cultivate the Earth in South Springfield”. For more information on this series and the speakers, click here.
Wartburg College offers their graduating senior students the opportunity to sign a sustainability pledge. This is a pledge that Wartburg encourages all seniors to take as they venture forward into the working world. This pledge is a promise that students will be citizens of the earth, meaning they will take responsibility in caring for the earth in their future careers. In this pledge, the student promises to recycle when they can, be conscious of the footprint they leave on the earth, and to leave the environment as clean if not cleaner than they arrived. Students who take this pledge will receive a pin to wear underneath their gown during graduation and will be recognized during the ceremony by Wartburg President Colson or Wartburg Dean Ernsting. The pledge reads as follows: “I pledge to take into account the social and environmental consequences of any job I consider and will try to improve these aspects of any organization for which I work.” To read more about the pledge and other Wartburg Sustainability efforts, click here.
Muhlenberg College, Luther College, Wartburg College, Wittenberg College, and Pacific Lutheran University were all recently included in the Sierra Club’s 2017 List of “Cool Schools”. The national assessment pulls data from STARS (Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System), a program run by the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. Information submitted to AASHE was used and scored across 61 questions from the STARS assessment, in addition to a supplemental question about fossil fuel investments. The Sierra Club used STARS reports to compile the list. To view the complete list of schools click here.