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Green Department Certification Program prepares for new phase

Franklin-based UCOP staff have enthusiastically supported the Green Department Certification Program, an Efficiency Review effort that aligns with President Janet Napolitano’s initiative to make UC carbon neutral by 2025. The program, which has been implemented on all floors of the Franklin building as of Sept. 1, asks OP staff to commit to making small changes in their daily habits to lower the building’s carbon footprint and conserve resources. These include turning off lights in unused workspaces and conference rooms, shutting down computers and monitors, using sustainable modes of transportation, conserving water and reducing trash.

Franklin staff take the pledge

Since the first phase of program implementation in May, 422 employees in the Franklin building (approximately 55 percent of all Franklin employees) have taken the pledge; the goal for the entire building is 80 percent, and the fifth and ninth floors have already achieved that target. Over 50 percent of Franklin employees taking the pledge have committed to reducing trash production through use of the proper recycling, composting and trash receptacles; and to minimizing paper towel and disposable beverage container use.

Volunteer Green Champions on each floor have been very creative in motivating their colleagues — some great ideas so far to foster participation include the fifth-floor coffee hour, the ninth-floor dish drive, and the seventh floor’s strategically located “I have the Power” stickers to prompt small habit changes. Everyone is encouraged to think about what they can do to conserve energy and resources here at UCOP. So far, some participants have formed carpools or taken to public transportation for their trips to work, removed bulbs from their overhead lighting or pledged not to use it at all, and take the stairs for trips between floors. The seventh-floor Green Team even created a SharePoint site, which includes certification information, conservation tips and a discussion board. You can already monitor the building’s energy usage on the Lucid monitor in the lobby by the garage elevators or online.

UCOP takes the challenge

We are excited to announce that beginning in October, the Green Department Certification program will be partnering with the President’s Carbon Neutrality Initiative to bring the Cool Campus Challenge to all UCOP locations. The Cool Campus Challenge is an online competition across all UC campuses and UCOP that motivates staff, faculty and students to reduce their individual carbon footprints, helping the UC system to reach its carbon neutrality goals. While UCOP will be competing at the systemwide level as a single location, we will be creating teams within the Challenge to facilitate a friendly internal competition, with prizes awarded to the most effective teams.

If you have any questions about the Green Department Certification program, contact a member of the steering committee:

Michael Annas             Donna Collins

Carol Lake                    Emily Rader

Gemma Rieser            Siena Sarmiento

For more information about the Cool Campus Challenge, contact Matt St. Clair or Janika McFeely.

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