University Housing

Division of Student Services and Enrollment Management
University of Oregon Home

Sustainability

Photo of recycle bins.

Green is Who We Are

University Housing proudly participates in a wide spectrum of sustainability efforts including everything from recycling competitions and energy controls to product purchases and general business practices. We strive toward making the residence halls a "greener" place to live. See below for some highlights.

University Housing Stats 2015-16

  • 118.7 tons of glass, metal, plastic recycled
  • 145.7 tons of paper recycled
  • 71 tons of corrugated cardboard recycled
  • 254.4 tons compost and compostables (inluding food waste and compostable food ware)
  • 590.6 tons of total waste diverted

Student Programs and Education

  • Students can donate unwanted clothing and household items at the end of the year to community organizations in a program we call Give Before You Go or the Family Housing yard sales. Donated items are distributed to needy families in the local Eugene-Springfield area.
  • The Civil War Food Drive and Recycle Mania programs are popular annual competitions with other institutions.
  • The “Do It In The Dark” energy-use awareness program encourages residents to think about conservation in new ways.
  • University Housing provides shared equipment at each housing service center to help reduce the need for individually purchased items.
  • Water bottles are given to each resident during fall move-in to encourage them to use hydration stations and cut down on the amount of plastic bottles or paper cups.
  • Students can recycle their laundry cards to be used the next year.
  • Recycle bins are located in each resident's room and throughout the dining and mail areas.

Dining Service Operations

  • Our dining venues and University Catering focus on in-season goods and local products. They are currently using products from over 25 local farms.
  • Recycled content such as non-bleached paper napkins are used in lieu of harmful bleached products whenever available.
  • We use compostable service ware such as coffee cups, drink cups, utensils, plates, and napkins. These items are collected and turned into compost at a local commercial composting site.
  • Mulitple water refill stations have been installed to encourage students to refill a reusable bottle.
  • Biodiesel fuels are created from spent fryer oils.

Facilities Operations and Green Cleaning

  • We've replaced all domestic hot water heaters with double-wall, semi-instantaneous steam heaters for more efficient energy use and quicker response time.
  • We continue to replace heating condensate vacuum systems to ensure maximum return and better heat transfer.
  • Products labeled “green” are certified by Green Seal and considered to be less harmful to human health and the planet.

General Business Practices

  • Consolidate orders when possible to reduce delivery trips to save on packing, fuel, and paperwork.
  • Online order processing and e-invoicing.
  • Purchase recycled goods or goods with recycled content to the greatest extent possible.
  • Purchase appliances and equipment qualified as Energy Star Efficient.
  • Computers specify Energy Star Efficient qualifiactions.
  • Surplus sale of excess or obsolete equipment so they can be reused.
  • Utilize campus office supply surplus warehouse.
  • Copier networked for document sharing via scan and send technology.
  • Purchase locally when reasonable.
  • Include language on contracts requesting that vendors use recycled materials or sustainable practices to the greatest reasonable extent.