What can you do to reduce waste at Western?
No. 9 on the Top 10 Actions for 10x12 is "share the ride, walk, or ride a bike." Transit, walking, biking, and carpool commuting saves money, reduces stress, lightens the load on parking facilities and roads and reduces fossil fuel emissions. Photo by Maddy Mixter | University Communications intern
What can you do to reduce waste and consumption on the Western Washington University campus?
The Office of Sustainability, quick on the heels of the successful 10x12 pilot program, has created a Top 10 list of actions for students, faculty and staff in support of the university's effort to reduce utilities consumption and cost by 10 percent by year's end. The office also has created a certification program to recognize the efforts of campus offices and departments to conserve energy and reduce waste.
Top 10 Actions for 10x12 is a list of the most effective and doable ways to reduce consumption and waste at Western. The list includes simple actions to reduce electricity consumption, cut down landfill waste and support university sustainability in other ways. More information and tools are available on the Office of Sustainability website.
In parallel with Top 10 Actions for 10x12, a Sustainable Office Certification program is being tested this summer. SOC is a measurement and rating system for the operation of high performance green offices on WWU’s campus, developed in-house by the Office of Sustainability. The SOC supports and recognizes office groups that promote awareness of conservation and make a commitment to best practices. Western Libraries Circulation, the Financial Aid Office, Environmental Health and Safety and the Western Foundation's Advancement Services have signed on to test the SOC tools this summer and to provide input before campus-wide launch of the program this fall. SOC information and tools can be reviewed at www.wwu.edu/sustain/soc/.
The 10x12 was piloted in Arntzen Hall, Parks Hall, Biology Building and Chemistry Building January 2011 to June 2012. In the pilot buildings, electricity consumption was reduced by 7 percent and water consumption by 14 percent, compared to a three-year baseline. Messaging and reminder elements of the pilot were implemented throughout the campus. Campus-wide natural gas consumption was less than expected during the winter months of 2011-2012, avoiding over $32,000 in costs to the university. Utility conservation results can be attributed to actions by building occupants based on awareness and conservation as well as building system improvements by Facilities Management. The 10x12 program is continuing in the pilot departments, with staff and faculty taking action to reduce energy consumption and waste throughout their buildings.
10x12 supports Western's climate action plan by taking steps toward carbon-neutrality.