Take Action! Green Initiative Pledge

Take Action!

Help UT Health Science Center and the community become a cleaner, more environmentally friendly place. Besides making an important difference on the health of our environment, many of these ideas will save the Health Science Center money, or help you decrease your own Utility bills!

Are you a ‘Go-Green’ newbie? Start with the simplest and least expensive ways to go green by looking for the green circle icon . For those of you ready to take the next step, look for the intermediate blue-square symbol –- these steps might cost a few dollars or take a little more time, but utility savings generally make the payback quick! For the experts out there willing to invest in something with a little more money or time, look for the black-diamond .


At UT Health Science Center

  • Everyone!
  • Students!
  • Faculty!
Recycle (see below). If you see someone throw out a recyclable, politely show them where they can recycle it next time. [recycling bin locations]
Turn it Off! Turning off lights, computers, or laboratory equipment (if safe) when not in use will decrease energy use and save UT Health Science Center money!
Don’t print unnecessarily, and when you do, print double-sided whenever possible.
Ask your chair, committee, and colleagues in your department to go paperless whenever possible. Let us know how you do!
Carpool with a friend or neighbor to work. Save money on gas, vehicle costs, and even parking. Plus, it’s always nice to have a little company! [carpool parking on police website]

In addition to all the other ideas listed here, there are several ways students can Go Green! Here are just a few:

  • Planning an event or meeting? Use electronic invitations to save on paper and printing, and make sure to collect recyclables at your meeting and deposit them in the recycling bins.
  • Bring your lunch to school using reusable containers – not only will you save money, you’ll cut down significantly on waste.
  • Join the Student Sustainability Club – this group of students is working on two goals: first is to provide education and events related to the effects of our environment on health. The second goal is to provide a constructive venue for students to interact with the Administration to promote continued support of the Green Initiative on campus. To join the group’s email list, send a message to gibsoncc2@uthscsa.edu.

In addition to all the other ideas listed here, there are many ways faculty can Go Green! Here are just a few ideas:

  • Clinicians can educate their patients about the benefits of a clean environment on health. Heart disease, stroke, asthma, and many other common conditions are associated with particulate matter and other environmental factors.
  • Faculty with labs can encourage fume-hood sills be closed (this is a major source of energy savings). In fact, faculty can create a lab sustainability plan that details what equipment can be turned off when not in use, along with other steps the lab will take to Go Green.
  • Faculty with labs can also make efficiency a factor in new equipment purchases.


At Home


Recycle! Don’t think it makes a difference? Recycling 1 ton of paper saves 17 mature trees, 7,000 gallons of water, 3 cubic yards of landfill space, 2 barrels of oil, and 4,100 kilowatt-hours of electricity – enough energy to power the average American home for five months (EPA, 2008). Recycling one aluminum can saves enough energy to run a 100-watt bulb for 20 hours, a computer for 3 hours, or a TV for 2 hours (EPA, 2008). [How to Recycle Anything!]

Own a home? It’s easy to recycle curbside using a provided green-bin or large blue-bin. No need to sort. You can recycle the following curbside:
  • Most paper (ad circulars, catalogs, cardboard packaging like cereal boxes, file folders, envelopes, junk mail, magazines, phone books, cardboard, and more).
  • Plastics labeled #1 through #7. No Styrofoam. Remove lids and rinse residual contents away. Includes beverage bottles, shampoo and lotion bottles, plastic shopping bags (bunched and tied together), prescription and medicine bottles.
  • Glass bottle and jars (all colors). Remove lids and rinse.
  • Metal cans: aluminum, steel, and tin. Remove contents. Includes EMPTY aerosol cans (remove nozzle), and baking tins (with food removed).