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Change Your Habits

“there are no such things as great deeds — only small ones done with great heart.” —mother theresa

Every individual can make a huge difference. Learn how you can make our campus greener with some quick tips!

  1. Unplug laptops and phones when they are fully charged
  2. Put your laptop on energy saver mode, or set it to go to sleep after a few minutes of no use
  3. If you use a desktop computer, turn off the monitor when not in use 
  4. Turn off or unlplug electronics when not in use (They still draw energy while they are plugged in, even if you aren't using them!)
  5. Do not leave the fridge door open for more than 1 minute at a time 
  6. If you live in traditional style housing (no kitchen or kitchenette) share one mini fridge and microwave between you and your roommate/roommates 
  7. Don't use a hair dryer (or if you do, use it on the cool setting). Hair dryers consume the most energy in your dorm room, even though they are used the least!
  8. Clean the lint filter to keep dryer running at peak efficiency 
  9. Print Double Sided to save energy, ink, and paper
  1. Turn off the lights when you are not in the room!
  2. If you live in a suite or apartment, make sure the lights in the common room are off before going to bed 
  3. Turn off classroom and public bathroom lights 
  4. Use LED or CFL bulbs and string lights
  5. Keep your curtains open to take advantage of natural light 
  1. Only do full loads of laundry (This will also save you tons of money. $1.75 per load adds up quickly.)
  2. Shorten your showers by just 1-2 minutes (saves up to 700 gallons/month)
  3. Turning off the water while brushing your teeth or shaving saves 3 gallons/day, which adds up to 1,095 gallons/year.
  4. Drink tap water rather than bottled water. Lots of bottled water is simply packaged tap water anyway. 
  5. Filing a work order for leaky faucets is a quick, effective, and cost-free way to prevent water waste. Work orders can also be used to control your room temperature.
  6. Use non-toxic cleaning chemicals (which are also a lot healthier for you!)
The web site of the Massachusetts Water & Reservoir Authority (MWRA) has many other tips for conserving water in your dorm, house, or apartment. Or learn over 100 ways you can save water by visiting Water – Use it Wisely.
  1. Use reusable water bottles. Not only does this save water, but it reduces plastic consumption, plastic pollution (especially in oceans), oil use, and landfil growth. Making bottles to meet Americans’ demand for bottled water required more than 1.5 million barrels of oil last year. Bottle filling stations are located in all first year residence hall bathrooms and across campus. If you would like a free reusable water bottle, get them from EcoPledge during the many fairs they host or contact sustainability@bc.edu
  2. Discounts are rewarded when reusable mugs/bottles are used to purchase beverages in the dining halls. Buy any size and be charged for a small. 
  3. DO NOT use the take out containers or throw-away plates in the dining halls unless you are leaving the dining hall to eat. Most of the paper and plastic containers are used by students who are eating their food in the building, creating waste for no reason. Please use the reusable plates, bowls, and silverware. 
  4. Use resusable K-Cups for Keurigs. This saves money and reduces a HUGE amount of waste. 
  5. If you bring a snack or lunch, use tupperware rather than plastic bags. 
  6. Use reusable grocery bags when shopping. Some stores will give you a discount for using them too!
  1. Walk or bike to class
  2. Take the BC bus 
  3. Take the T or a bus to get around the city (Riding public transit helps conserve an estimated 1.4 billion gallons of gas and curb the release of roughly 1.5 million tons of harmful carbon dioxide a year.)
  4. Bike around the city using the public bikes available at a variety of stations across the city. Rent them for the day ($8), month, or year!
  5. If you take Uber or Lyft, use the 'pool' feature 
  6. Drive a ZipCar! Each ZipCar replaces more than 20 privately owned vehicles as owners sell their previously owned cars, drive less, and use alternative forms of transportation
  7. If you need a car on campus, commute with other students and buy a hybrid or electric car if possible 
  8. Aggressive driving (speeding, rapid acceleration, and hard braking) wastes gas. It can lower your highway gas mileage by 33% and city mileage by 5%
  9. Avoid high speeds. Above 60 mph, gas mileage drops rapidly. Fueleconomy.gov shows how driving speed affects gas mileage.
  1. Buy organic
  2. Buy locally grown food. The Loft at Addie's dining hall sources locally when possible. 
  3. Cut down on your meat consumption, especially red meat. Deciding to cut meat out of just a few meals per week is a great way to reduce your footprint! BC dining offers a variety of vegetarian options. Check out these quick statistics or more in depth analysis of what the world would be like if we cut down on meat for just ONE day. 
  4. Although it may seem daunting, try going pescetarian, vegetarian, or vegan. Not only is it better for the environment and the animals, but it is healthier for you too! Most meat consumed in the U.S. is mass produced and filled with chemicals, antibiotics, and unknown forms of meat. There are a variety of meat substitutes that taste exactly the same as real meat, so you don't have to miss out on your favorite dishes. Check out our sustainable restuarants page for suggestions on where to eat. 
  5. Support restuarants that get their produce from local farms, some of which can also be found on our sustainable restuarants page. 
group of students studying outside on higgins lawn