Habit of the Month

October: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle...Paper

Costs & Impacts of Paper Consumption

  • The item most frequently encountered in landfills is plain old paper – on average, it accounts for more than 40 percent of a landfill's contents. (Source: http://www.epa.gov)
  • If everyone recycled their Sunday paper, 550, 000 trees would be saved each week. (Source: http://www.earthday.net)
  • The typical office worker uses about 10,000 sheets of copy paper each year. (Source: http://www.ibm.com)

What You Can Do to Reduce Paper Consumption

  • Change your word processing program's default settings so you can put more on each page.
    Set your margins to smaller numbers and reduce font size to 10 point to decrease the amount of paper required.
  • Purchase paper with post-consumer recycled content.
    Look for paper that carries the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) logo.
  • Use the blank sides of printed sheets for scrap paper or for sending faxes.
  • Are you receiving junk mail at work? Contact the companies and ask them to take your name off their mailing lists.

Also, Please Think Before You Print

Pushing the print button is too easy...and can be wasteful.

  • Before you print a document, ask yourself if you really need a hardcopy of it.
  • Use the print preview function before printing any document to avoid mistakes.
  • Edit and proofread documents on the computer instead of printing hardcopies.
  • Use direct computer faxing and email whenever possible.
  • Print on the blank sides of used sheets of paper.
  • Be sure to recycle used paper.

How the E-Team Can Help

If you need assistance implementing any of the suggestions in this document, please contact a member of the E-Team.

September: Green Computing

The ETeam believes that much can be done to conserve energy (and thus money) on campus - and that we can starts with our computers. If 200 computers and monitors were turned off at night and on weekends, the college could save almost $9,000 each year. There are many simple things we can do help conserve energy on campus by learning a few "green computing" tips:

  • Screen savers do not save energy, but giving your computer a nap does.
  • Enable power management features on your computer monitor and hard drive such that your computer will go into a low power "sleep" or "hibernate" mode when not actively in use. (see below for instructions)
  • Keep all computers off unless in use, especially at night and on weekends; use a power strip to shut down all office equipment, including computers.
  • Turn off your monitor when you go to lunch, to class, or to a meeting.
  • Purchase ‘Energy Star' computers and peripherals whenever possible.
  • Laptops can use up to 90% less energy than desktop computers.
  • LCD monitors can use up to 75% less electricity than CRT monitors.
  • Use standby mode on copy machines whenever possible.

Climate Savers Computing (http://www.climatesaverscomputing.org) has put together a wonderful document to help us learn how to alter power management settings on different computers. This document is posted on the ETeam blog, http://e-teamsjc.blogspot.com/, is available through the College's Sustainable Attainable web page, or on the Climate Savers Computing web page, at http://www.climatesaverscomputing.org/docs/Power_management_instructions....

There is also a Jing video, "PowerDown," produced by Tony Schwieterman posted on the blog as well. If you have any questions, especially concerned with adjusting the power management settings on your computer, please contact Brian Shelley or another ETeam member. Green computing habits are a great way to reduce energy consumption on campus, and live a more sustainable life in general.

Special note: In Maine, computers must be recycled, not disposed of, because of toxic materials used in the construction of these devices (http://www.maine.gov/dep/rwm/recycle/computerrecy.htm).