Green is Who We Are

University Housing proudly participates in a wide spectrum of sustainability efforts—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.

University Housing Stats 2018–19


glass, metal, plastic recycled
paper and cardboard recycled
compost and compostables
total waste diverted

Student Programs and Education

  • Recycle bins are located in each resident’s room and throughout the dining and mail areas.
  • 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. They can also donate at Family Housing yard sales. Donated items are made available in thrift stores in the Eugene-Springfield area.
  • Several Academic Residential Communities provide opportunities for students to get involved with local nonprofits.
  • The Civil War Food Drive and RecycleMania programs are popular annual competitions with other institutions.
  • University Housing provides shared equipment at each housing service center to help reduce the need for individually purchased items.
  • Students can recycle their laundry cards to be used the next year.


Dining Service Operations

  • Our dining venues and University Catering focus on in-season goods and local products. They are currently using products from more than 25 local farms.
  • Recycled items such as non-bleached paper napkins are used instead of harmful bleached products whenever available.
  • We prioritize the use of reusable plates and cutlery over disposable single-use items.
  • Water refill stations are available in all dining venues to refill reusable bottles. We encourage students to stay hydrated.
  • Our spent fryer oils are collected and converted to biodiesel fuels.
  • We encourage low carbon, vegan, and vegetarian options on all our menus.
  • We prepare and serve more than 30,000 pounds of tofu annually.
  • Our milk is rBGH-free and comes from Oregon farms.

Facility Operations and Green Cleaning

  • We’re in the process of replacing gas-fired 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.
  • We use microfiber cloths that remove bacteria without using chemical disinfectants.
  • All major new construction projects achieve LEED gold certification. They also meet the university’s Advanced Energy Threshold, which has a target of 25 percent higher energy efficiency than is mandated by the current Oregon Energy Code.

General Business Practices

  • Consolidate orders when possible to reduce delivery trips to save on packing, fuel, and paperwork.
  • Process orders online and with e-invoices.
  • Purchase recycled goods or goods with recycled content to the greatest extent possible.
  • Purchase computers appliances, and equipment qualified as Energy Star Efficient.
  • Sell or donate surplus or obsolete equipment so it can be reused.
  • Use campus office supply surplus warehouse.
  • Provide networked copiers 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 extent possible.