Most students understand the importance of taking care of the environment. But when midterm season rolls around and you have term papers and readings piling up, ‘being green’ often ends up on the backburner.
This part of the school year can be incredibly busy, but there are lots of easy ways students can help the planet, without sacrificing precious study time. Here are a few tips to get you started!
1) Use a reusable water bottle
According to the David Suzuki Foundation, more than 85% of the 2 billion litres of bottled water Canadians consume annually goes into the trash, cluttering landfills and polluting our planet. Instead of buying a bottle of water every day, invest in a reusable water bottle. Your school will likely have plenty of drinking fountains where you can fill up for free. With this simple tip, you’ll save the environment, and some money too!
2) Walk, bike, or take public transportation
If you live within walking or biking distance of your school campus, consider using one of these eco-friendly methods to get to and from school instead of driving. Or, if you live farther away, hop on public transportation. Besides the obvious benefit of helping the environment, taking public transit lets you put the stress of driving into someone else’s hands, giving you more time to be productive. Use your commute to check emails, review for your first class, or catch a few more minutes of sleep.
3) Turn off the lights
This one might seem like a no-brainer, but if you’re the last person to leave a classroom or a study room, turn off the lights. Don’t assume someone else will! And if you’re using a computer on campus, remember to shut it down completely when you’re done. Not only is this a good security practice (in case you didn’t sign out of an account properly), you will also help reduce energy usage.
4) Reduce paper usage
To minimize waste, only print what you need. For example, if you are submitting an assignment, check with your professor to see if he or she will accept a PDF. And for note-taking in a lecture, invest in a stylus and tablet. Instead of having to lug around different binders to your classes, all your notes will be easily accessible in one compact device. Lastly, when you need a copy of a document, instead of photocopying, take a photo or scan the document. Campus photocopiers often charge you a dime or more for one photocopy, but scanning is free – a simple switch that will help the environment and your wallet!
Living green on campus doesn’t have to be complicated. These simple, eco-friendly habits are great ways for students everywhere to do their part for the planet.