/ Physical Plant Department

Sustainability

The Physical Plant Department is an important partner in the sustainability efforts of Hope College.

Highlights

  • Tracking electrical and gas consumption through our partnership with our local  utility companies
  • Fine-tuning our waste collection and hauling services to minimize landfill volume and increase our recycling and composting efforts
  • Installing efficiency upgrades in building systems such as LED bulbs, variable-frequency drives, motion-sensor light switches and high-efficiency furnaces and water heaters
  • Many of the cleaning products used by custodial staff, as well as those we provide for cottage and apartment residents, were recently replaced with environmentally friendly alternatives to conform to the Green Cleaning Policy

Sustainability tips

Yes, you can help! Be mindful of your habits and your habitat, then make improvements to go green.

  • Wait until you have a full load of laundry, and wash using cold water.
  • When you're a bit chilled in your cottage or apartment, throw on a sweatshirt instead of bumping up the thermostat.
  • Be sure there is nothing blocking your vents.  
  • Limit your use of disposable dishware.
  • Take shorter showers, and don't leave the water running while you brush your teeth.
  • Turn off lights and TVs as you exit a room.
  • Personal refrigerators use a lot of energy even though they are small. Make the best use of the main refrigerator(s) in your cottage, then see if you can go without the portable.
  • Air conditioning is another big energy-use system. On cool nights, open your windows, then close them in the morning before the day heats up.
  • In the heating season, be sure your windows and storm windows are closed and locked.
  • Be mindful of how you throw stuff away — look for trash/recycle/compost containers and use them appropriately.
  • Consider getting a compost bucket for your cottage or apartment.
  • At Move-Out time  look for the donation boxes in the dorms and consider donating your gently used clothing or household goods instead of putting them into the dumpster — and ultimately into the landfill.