Tip of the Month:

Be unconventional. Keep a list on your fridge of these eight additional troublemakers: conventional versions of milk, peanut butter, baby food, ketchup, corn, cottonseed oil, beef, and soy. Each month, pick one item off the list -- corn and its byproducts, for example -- and find a way to feast without it. You'll be reducing your household intake of toxins, pesticides, antibiotics, and hormones. The earth will be happier, too


Departmental Tips

The faculty and staff of UNCW hold an integral role in defining UNCW’s leadership in the area of sustainability. Below is a list of twenty things that each department on campus can do to make their day to day operations more sustainable.  Take a look through this list and integrate as many of these as possible into your operations. Do your part to Recycle, Reduce, Reuse and Rethink how we do things at UNCW!!!


  • It is estimated that approximately 10% of power used by appliances such as chargers drain small amounts of energy when plugged in but not in use. Plug these into power strips and switch them off when not in use.
  • When you leave an office or classroom for more than 5 minutes, turn off the lights.
  • Utilize compact florescent bulbs for fixtures such as lamps and task lights. These last up to 3 times longer and utilize significantly less energy.
  • As you replace appliances of any type including computers, refrigerators and microwaves, always consider an EnergyStar compliant purchase. For more information, go to http://www.energystar.gov
  • By modifying the power management settings on your computer you can save from $25-$75 per year.



Report leaks to Physical Plant at 3101 as soon as you observe them. A leak that drips once every 6 seconds can waste over 450 gallons in a year. To estimate the volume of water saved by fixing a leak, visit the following website.  http://www.gdrc.org/uem/water/drip-calculator.html


  • Utilize rechargeable batteries rather than alkaline batteries. An estimated 15 billion batteries a year go to landfills. UNCW recycles rechargeable batteries.
  • Don’t print your e-mail unless absolutely necessary and add a “no print” signature to the end of your e-mail. 
  • Utilize paperless technologies when possible and printable forms if forms are necessary.
  • Whenever possible, print and photocopy double sided. Most new printers will print double sided and reduces your paper consumption by 50%. Minimize the number of desktop printers and utilize network printers.
  • Utilize a local vendor to refill toner and ink cartridges rather than buying new. This cuts the cost by nearly 50%. The next best option is to exchange them at the time of purchase, most major office supply warehouses now offer rebates on cartridge exchanges.
  • Utilize surplus property services on campus.  http://www.uncw.edu/ba/surplus/  Many times used office equipment and furniture can be obtained free of charge for your department from surplus property. Before disposing of any equipment, send it to surplus if it has any value.
  • UNCW has the ability to recycle nearly everything. Consider reducing the number of trash cans in your department and replacing them with recycling bins. For further information on what we recycle, http://www.uncw.edu/sustainability/documents/Recycling_at_UNCW.pdf
  • Purchase paper and other office supplies that are recycled. Most vendors have a listing of everything from copier/printer paper to post-it notes and pens.
  • Decrease the default margins on your documents. The default margins are at 1.25 inches on the sides and 1 inch on the top. Decrease these to 0.7-1.0 inches all the way around and decrease the amount of paper you use. Also decrease your font size to 11 point.



  • Walk, bike or use the shuttle when traveling on campus. Consider the purchase of neighborhood electric vehicles or departmental bikes.  http://www.uncw.edu/parking/shuttle.htm
  • Check tire pressure and oil level every time you refuel to maintain gas mileage on departmental vehicles.
  • Get involved with the sustainability effort at UNCW by volunteering for a subcommittee. Contact Diane Reed reedd@uncw.edu or Stan Harts hartss@uncw.edu for more information.
  • Integrate sustainability into your purchasing and operational decisions. Just as you consider profit, ease of use and safety in your operational and purchasing decisions; rethink and make sustainability a priority in your selection process

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