The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

Tips for eco-friendly living on and off campus

(Graphic by Joy Damon)

Welcome back to another year at Guilford College! While many things at school have changed over the summer, we at The Guilfordian are hoping to keep one motif going: last year’s theme of “Green and Beyond.”

Sustainability is not achieved in one year; it takes on-going dedication to the environment. But with everything else happening on campus, it can be hard to keep up with sustainability at Guilford. That is where The Guilfordian can help.

In this new sustainability-themed column, we will be running articles covering such topics as local environmental news, Guilford’s continuing sustainability efforts, or just advice to help you live a greener life. To kick the year off right, here are some tips to keep it green at Guilford.


Reduce waste by purchasing products with less packaging, such as bulk cereal or loose tea.

Close the GAPPS; recycle Glass, Aluminum, Paper, Plastic, and Steel in any recycling bin on campus.

Cleaning up? Do not throw away usable clothes, furniture, or other things — donate them to a friend or thrift store.

We all know the dining hall composts most of its food waste, but you can compost in your on-campus dorm or apartment, too. Collect fruit and vegetable scraps in a bucket with a lid, and dump it in the compost pile next to The Pines periodically. Don’t forget to rinse the bucket to keep the smell away.


Turn off the lights when you leave the room. The U.S. Department of Energy says that you should always turn off incandescent lights when they are not in use. Turn off fluorescent lights if you won’t be needing them for 15 minutes or more.

Turn off your computer or put it in sleep mode when you are not using it.

Use compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) in light fixtures. Energy Star-rated CFLs use up to 75 percent less energy than incandescent bulbs, according to Using a desk light or lamp instead of an overhead light can also save power.

Senior and resident advisor Elijah Dacosta recommends unplugging appliances when they are not in use. Even when they are not being used, game systems, kitchen appliances, and even lamps can draw “ghost power.”

Open your blinds and let the sun light your room, instead of turning on the dim overhead lights while you do homework.


Time your showers. According to National Geographic, a seven-minute shower with a low-flow showerhead uses only 14 gallons of water. If your showers tend to be longer, try a bath instead — 20 minutes in the tub instead of the shower can save 20 gallons of water

Collect “gray water” — water that would otherwise go down the drain while you wait for the shower to heat up. Use this to flush or water houseplants.

Do you have a dishwasher in your Hodgins or off-campus apartment? Consumer Reports says that “an efficient dishwasher can use less water than washing dishes by hand, no matter how frugal you are at the faucet.” Make sure to fill the washer up completely to save water.

Only run full loads of laundry, too. Afterwards, dry your clothes on a collapsible drying rack to save energy.

Let it mellow.


Buy local, organic food when possible. The Greensboro Farmer’s Market is close by and a great source of fresh foods.

Save gas by carpooling whenever possible. Target is always better with a group of friends.

Walking and biking help reduce emissions and keeps you in shape. Guilford’s Walkability Score is 80 out of 100 at

Carry reusable shopping bags instead of plastic bags, which are made from petroleum, or paper bags. If you only have one or two items, just carry them in your hands.

Looking for furniture or a Halloween costume? Check thrift stores first. Buying used products saves money, energy, and natural resources. Many thrift stores, such as Goodwill, also benefit those in need.

We want to know…

What do you do to “keep it green” on or off campus? Let us know on Facebook, Twitter, or by commenting below!

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