Green Alert

June, 2009

Going Trayless Saves Tons of Money and Waste

Since PSU and its dining contractor Sodexo decided to go trayless in Prospect Dining Hall in spring 2008, the University has saved nearly $160,000 and slashed its food waste by 35 tons, roughly the weight equivalent of six African elephants.

Small Changes—Large Impact

Beginning with the Fall 2008 issue, PSU’s Office of Public Relations began printing Plymouth Magazine using a Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified paper composed of 50 percent recycled content, 25 percent of which is post-consumer waste, in an effort to reduce our carbon footprint.

The FSC is an international non-profit organization that promotes responsible management of the world’s forests. This certification means that the magazine’s paper can be traced back to the forest from which it originated, ensuring that conservation and environmental stewardship are maintained throughout the paper’s lifecycle.

Here’s what our switch to greener paper means for the environment:

Annual Environmental Savings

  • wood = 20 tons
    (that’s about 138 trees)
  • energy = 96 million BTUs
    (more than the amount of energy used by an average household in one year)
  • water = 50,130 gallons
  • greenhouse gases = 15,360 lbs
    (the equivalent of the greenhouse gases released by an average car in one year)

Environmental impact estimates were made using the Environmental Defense Fund Paper Calculator.  More Information >>

The Paper Calculator is based on research done by the Paper Task Force, a peer-reviewed study of the lifecycle environmental impacts of paper production and disposal. The underlying data are updated regularly.

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