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TABLE OF CONTENTS Welcome to the Green Living Council About the Green Living Council Program Your Role as a Green Living Coordinator What to Expect From the Green Living Council Important Contact Information Sustainability Efforts at Stanford Living Green at Stanford: Tips and Guidelines Additional Sustainability Resources Recording Your Efforts

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WELCOME TO THE GREEN LIVING COUNCIL On behalf of Students for a Sustainable Stanford and all of our campus partners, welcome to the Green Living Council! You have been selected as a member of this council because of your demonstrated interest in issues of the environment and sustainability, as well as your clear passion for helping to make Stanford a truly green university. We are incredibly excited to have such an amazing group of Green Living Coordinators to work with in this inaugural year of the Council, and there is no doubt that together we will make great strides toward the goal of promoting sustainability throughout the Stanford community. As you are most certainly aware, humanity faces immense challenges in our attempts to confront environmental crises across the globe, including such daunting problems as climate change, air and water pollution, waste buildup, ecosystem decline, and species extinction. But even amid dire predictions about the future, there is still great hope for solutions, especially at a place like Stanford. While leading scholars from many fields pursue research and conduct studies to find solutions to environmental problems, students too can play a vital role in the movement toward a more sustainable future. Stanford’s commitment to leadership in this area involves not only its academic excellence in related fields, but also its pledge to set the standard for how a sustainable, environmentally conscious institution should function. The goal of the Green Living Council is to use student initiative and enthusiasm to foster sustainable practices across campus and make Stanford a model of student dedication to sustainability. In this way, we can all make an important contribution to a sustainable future right here at home. In this packet, you will find the necessary information and guidance to get you started in your challenge of promoting sustainable behaviors in your campus residence. As the year goes on, you will receive additional materials and training to help you implement specific programs and activities. Please take the time to read through the information carefully, and keep the packet for your reference throughout the year. Once again, congratulations on your selection to the Green Living Council! We are looking forward to a tremendous year for sustainability at Stanford! Sincerely,

The Green Living Council Team


ABOUT THE GREEN LIVING COUNCIL PROGRAM The Green Living Council is a peer-led, residence-based program to promote sustainability among students across the Stanford campus. Throughout the year, we will work on various educational initiatives, activities, events, and other programs aimed at fostering sustainable behaviors in all aspects of student life, from water and energy use to recycling and transportation. The Green Living Council will be run by Students for a Sustainable Stanford, in partnership with several campus departments. To support your efforts, a small group of student Program Coordinators will be working to create materials, plan activities, and organize and coordinate the Green Living Council. If at any time you have questions, concerns, or suggestions about the program, please don’t hesitate to talk with us. This year’s Green Living Council leaders are: GLC Director GLC Program Coordinators

Kevan Christensen Sarah Allen Divya Bhargava Elaine Chang Kevin Hsu Emma Laughlin Carolyn Mansfield TC Robbins

In addition, each partner department will have a representative to our advisory board. These representatives will serve as liaisons and great resources for our efforts. This year’s campus partners and advisory board members are: Residential & Dining Enterprises

Shirley Everett Senior Associate Vice Provost for R&DE

Student Housing

Nik Kaestner Sustainability Coordinator, Student Housing

Stanford Dining

Erin Gaines Sustainable Foods Coordinator, Stanford Dining


Julie Muir Community Relations Manager, PSSI


Katey Mulfinger ASSU Executive Cabinet Chair for Sustainability

Residential Education

To be announced


YOUR ROLE AS A GREEN LIVING COORDINATOR As the Green Living Coordinator for your dorm or house, you help to form the core of this program. In addition to being the sustainability advocate for your dorm or house, in charge of encouraging sustainable behavior among all residents, you will also be the liaison between your residence and the groups and departments working with the Council. In many cases, you will be acting as a coordinator, helping to implement projects and communicate information, resources, and materials from the Council out to the residences. At the same time, however, we encourage you to act as a representative as well by bringing your own ideas, suggestions, and concerns – as well as those of your housemates – to the attention of the Council. The rest of this section gives an outline of your responsibilities as a Green Living Coordinator.

Attending Meetings of the Green Living Council Meetings will be held in the evening approximately once a month and will usually last about one to two hours. At each meeting, we will announce the time and place of the next meeting. We strongly encourage you to attend every meeting if at all possible. At the meetings, we will cover important information about upcoming projects and give you the information and materials you need for the coming month’s initiatives. At the same time, meetings serve as a great opportunity to get to know fellow Green Living Coordinators and become a part of the sustainability community on campus. Thus, meetings are a crucial component of the Green Living Council program. If for some reason you are unable to attend a meeting, please e-mail so that we can get you the information you missed.

Leading Educational and Behavior Change Initiatives in Your Residence Sustainability education and motivating behavior change are at the center of the Green Living Council’s objectives. Through this program, we hope that all Stanford students will have a better understanding of how to make sustainable choices and a desire to do so while on campus and throughout their lives once they leave. Although we encourage you to work on promoting all aspects of sustainability throughout the year, each month we will be selecting specific focus areas and implementing related educational and behavior change initiatives. Focus areas will include water, energy, food, recycling, transportation, academic and career opportunities, and more. As a Green Living Coordinator, you will contribute to these initiatives by making presentations in your dorm or house, coordinating projects, competitions, and other activities to build enthusiasm for sustainability, helping to spread the word about sustainability-related events and opportunities on campus, distributing materials and information to housemates, and more. At Green Living Council meetings, you will receive information and resources to aid you in all of these projects.


Representing Your Residence on the Green Living Council While the Green Living Council will serve as a way to communicate information about sustainability to all students through the coordinators, we also hope that you will be able to communicate to us the thoughts and ideas of your housemates in relation to sustainability. For example, if your dorm or house needs more recycling bins, wants more information about local and organic foods, or would like to look into ways to spend dorm funds on energy efficiency projects, these are all things that you can bring to our attention. We will then work with the appropriate departments and staff members to address your issues. We encourage you to talk with people in your residence to find out what they think about sustainability, what motivates them to or prevents them from making sustainable choices, and what more they would like to see done to make Stanford sustainable.

Encouraging Participation in Dorm/House-Wide Competitions Throughout the year, there will be at least two big competitions that will harness friendly competitive spirit to encourage students across campus to be more sustainable. The first is the Energy Bowl and Water Derby, a competition between dorms and houses to see who can save the most energy and water. The second is RecycleMania, in which Stanford competes with other universities nationwide to reduce waste. Both of these competitions are great opportunities to promote dorm, house, and school spirit while also contributing greatly to campus sustainability efforts. As a Green Living Coordinator, you will play a big part in getting your residence excited about participating.

Serving as a Resource for Housemates With Questions About Sustainability As a Green Living Coordinator, you will be the expert on sustainability and the environment in your residence, and thus a great resource for students that have questions about anything from what to recycle to what types of food are environmentally friendly. We encourage you to get to know your housemates and to make sure they are aware that you are the Green Living Coordinator. This way, they know where to go if they have questions. If you ever come across questions that you aren’t able to answer, feel free to contact us and we will be sure to get you an answer as soon as possible.

Helping With Energy Efficiency Projects in Your Residence Occasionally, we may ask Green Living Coordinators to help Student Housing with various energy efficiency projects such as retrofits in the residences. These will be great opportunities to learn more about what goes into making buildings “green” while also having a very tangible and lasting impact on the sustainability of your residence.

Keeping Thorough Records of Your Efforts A key component of the Green Living Council is our efforts to measure the effectiveness of these behavior change and sustainability awareness programs. We will be distributing surveys to students about their behaviors at the beginning and end of the program to help us determine what techniques were most effective. To make these measurements as


accurate as possible, it is very important that all Green Living Coordinators keep careful records of the projects they worked on and the programs they implemented during the course of the year. This will also ensure that you have a good record of all the great work you have put into serving as a member of the Green Living Council. Please see Recording Your Efforts on page 12 for more details about how to record your efforts.

WHAT TO EXPECT FROM THE GREEN LIVING COUNCIL At Green Living Council meetings, you will receive most of the information and materials that you need to be successful coordinators in your residence. We will use meetings to give you the background and training that will help you educate fellow housemates about sustainability. For various initiatives throughout the year, we will provide you with materials to be used in presentations to your residence, posters and flyers to hang in prominent places, announcements about upcoming events and projects related to sustainability, and more. While we certainly encourage you to create your own materials and plan your own activities for your residence, we will be working hard to make sure you have all the necessary resources for your efforts. Since meetings will only be held once a month, another key component of the Green Living Council will be our e-mail list. We will use this list to send out important updates and announcements that were not available at the previous meeting. In addition, we will be limiting the amount of paper we use whenever possible, so we may often send out materials and information electronically via the list. The e-mails from this list will say [GLC] at the start of the subject heading. Please be sure to read all of these e-mails carefully as they will definitely include important information. This will not be a chat list, and we will limit messages as much as possible. Lastly, we really want the Green Living Council to be a fun and exciting opportunity for you to get to know other people in the sustainability community at Stanford. We will be working to plan events and activities for everyone to get to know each other, and we encourage you to work with other coordinators in your own residence and surrounding residences.

IMPORTANT CONTACT INFORMATION If you are unable to attend an upcoming meeting, have any general questions about the Green Living Council, have suggestions and input on how to improve the program, or for anything else related to the GLC, please e-mail


SUSTAINABILITY EFFORTS AT STANFORD As a member of the Green Living Council, you are joining a great group of students, faculty, staff, administrators, alumni, and other community members all working to make Stanford a more sustainable campus. Sustainability is a core value at Stanford and the University is committed to pursuing sustainable practices throughout the campus. There is still much work to be done, but with the help of Green Living Coordinators and many others, Stanford can continue to demonstrate strong leadership in building a sustainable future. To give you a sense of Stanford’s efforts, below are some things you might not have known about sustainability on campus.  In 2007, Stanford was one of only four universities to earn the highest grade given (A-) on the Sustainable Endowments Institute’s College Sustainability Report Card.  Stanford’s Sustainability Working Group brings together faculty, students, and staff from numerous campus departments to address ways to make the campus more sustainable and make policy recommendations to the President and Provost. Beginning shortly, the Working Group will be led by the new Executive Director of Sustainability and Energy Management.  Stanford generates its own electricity on campus through Cardinal Cogen. This natural gas power plant is made much more efficient through a cogeneration process that makes use of waste heat for heating parts of the campus.  Stanford has completed an inventory of its greenhouse gas emissions and voluntarily reported them to the California Climate Action Registry.  Over the last ten years, Stanford’s Energy Retrofit Program has saved about 158 million kilowatt-hours of electricity, which is enough to power 22,000 homes in California for a year.  Stanford has both guidelines for making new buildings sustainable and programs to retrofit existing buildings. The Leslie Shao-ming Sun Field Station at Jasper Ridge Biological Reserve gets much of its energy from solar panels and the new Jerry Yang and Akiko Yamazaki Environment and Energy building is expected to have 44% reduced energy costs relative to a comparable building. The Carnegie Global Ecology Research Center emits 72% less carbon and uses 33% less water than a comparable building.  Stanford Dining is a certified green business that composted more that 1.3 million pounds of food waste in 2006. Almost 50% of the food is sustainably grown and 22% is organic. In addition, it buys 40% of its food from local farmers. 100% if


Dining’s burgers as 80% of all beef are from the local Marin Sun Farms, which raises 100% grass-fed beef.  Stanford Dining also supports the student run Community Farm and the Eat Local program. (  This year, Stanford Dining sponsored a zero-waste lunch at New Student Orientation, at which all food was sustainably produced and all containers were either recyclable or compostable.  Student Housing lighting retrofits save about 2.1 million kilowatt-hours of electricity a year, while water-saving retrofits have reduced annual water use by about 50 million gallons.  Stanford’s Water Conservation Program has reduced water use from 2.7 million gallons daily (mgd) in 2000-2001 to 2.25 mgd in 2006-2007.  Stanford’s transportation demand management program has successfully reduced the number of employees that drive to campus alone from 72% in 2002 to 52% in 2007. The University pays for all employees to have free access to local mass transit, including Caltrain and BART.  The Green Dorm project, when complete, will be a living laboratory designed to have a zero net carbon footprint and experiment with a number of cutting-edge sustainable technologies.  The Stanford recycling program was started by Stanford students in 1970 and run by the ASSU until 1992. Since then, it has been run by the Stanford Recycling Center in partnership with Peninsula Sanitary Service, Inc. (PSSI) and won the Outstanding School Program Award in 2002. The program has increased the percentage of waste diverted from the landfill from 30% in 1994 to 61% in 2006.  The Stanford Bookstore now offers several products, such as notebooks and paper, made from 100% recycled content.  Stanford’s Habitat Conservation Plan helps to ensure the protection of native endangered species, such as the California red-legged frog, steelhead trout, and California tiger salamander. About 60% of Stanford’s land is still undeveloped. Clearly, Stanford has a history of dedication to sustainability and a commitment to continuing the tradition of leadership and environmental stewardship into the future. The Green Living Council and its work in encouraging sustainable behaviors among students will play a key role in furthering these efforts.



LIVING GREEN AT STANFORD: TIPS AND GUIDELINES You may already be well aware of the many things that students can do to be more sustainable, but here is a short list of tips and guidelines that you can share with your residents. In addition, this section includes important information about recycling, composting, and other Stanford-specific programs. We will augment and add to this information as the year goes on.

Energy and Water  Switch to a compact fluorescent light bulb (CFL). They are 75% more efficient than normal bulbs and can last up to 10 times as long  Turn off the lights whenever you are the last to leave a room  Set your computer to go into sleep mode after five minutes. Don’t use screensavers – they don’t actually save energy.  Turn off and unplug all electronic devices. Many devices draw power even when they are off. Using power strips can make things simpler.  If you are buying a new printer, refrigerator, or other appliance, buy a product with the EnergyStar symbol for energy efficiency.  Don’t open windows during the winter – this lets heat out and increases energy use.  Take shorter showers. This saves water and the energy needed to pump and heat the water.  Only do full loads of laundry.  Report any leaking sinks or showers to your Housing Supervisor.

Eating Green  Choose locally grown, seasonal, and organic food whenever possible.  Only take as much food as you need in the dining halls.  Be sure to look for compostable tableware and be sure to put all food and compostable items into the food waste bins.


 Don’t buy huge boxes of disposable water bottles. Carry a Nalgene or other reusable bottle.  Bring your own mug when you go to get coffee. Consider bringing your own silverware if you are eating somewhere that uses disposable utensils.

Transportation  Bike! It’s easy on the Stanford campus, so don’t use a car unless it’s really necessary  Take the Marguerite bus if it’s too far to bike.  To get to the San Francisco Airport: o Take Caltrain north and get off at the Milbrae station, where you can transfer to BART. o Take BART to the San Francisco Airport station.  To get to the San Jose Airport: o Take Caltrain south and get off at the Santa Clara Transit Center. o Take the free VTA Airport Shuttle bus from the Caltrain station to the airport.

Shopping     

Bring a reusable bag with you to the store. Buy products with the least amount of packaging. Buy recycled paper products at the Stanford Bookstore. Buy used furniture from the Stanford Reuse Store. Sign up for to network with other Stanford students looking to buy or sell items. Exchange old items with someone else instead of throwing them away.

Composting  What is composting? Composting takes advantage of natural decomposition processes to break down waste into an earthy material that can then be used to fertilize soil. Stanford has composting programs at all dining halls, 43 of the student-managed houses, and three cafes.  These items can go into the food waste/compost bins at Stanford: food scraps, fruits, vegetables, meat, fish, bones, coffee grounds, tea bags, plants, flowers, leaves, tree trimmings, sawdust, soiled paper and napkins, pizza boxes/donut boxes, compostable serviceware certified by the Biodegradable Products Institute.  The items CANNOT go into the food waste/compost bins: metal, glass, plastic, foil, cans, Styrofoam, diapers, kitty litter, pet waste, ash, rock, stone, bleach, detergents, degreasers, batteries, non-compostable serviceware.

Recycling  See the following pages for information about what can and cannot be recycled on campus.




Academic Opportunities  Take an I-Earth course! It’s your introduction to the planet and a great way to learn more about the interactions between human and natural systems. (  Consider exploring opportunities at the many academic centers on campus that study the environment and sustainability, including the Woods Institute, the School of Earth Sciences, the Precourt Institute for Energy Efficiency, the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, the Department of Biological Sciences, any many more. (


ADDITIONAL SUSTAINABILITY RESOURCES Sierra Student Coalition Grist Environmental News and Humor Environmental News Network Campus Climate Challenge Worldchanging Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education  Acterra      

RECORDING YOUR EFFORTS Please keep track of the following information about all of the projects you implement as a Green Living Coordinator:  Description of the project (including where and how it was implemented)  Goals of the project  Date(s) project was implemented (give full range of dates if project was implemented over a period of time)  Who was the audience for the project? Who did you intend to reach? Who did you actually reach?  Feedback from audience  Suggestions for the future (what worked well and did not work well)


Green Living Council Orientation  

Guide for new coordinators, 2008-2009

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