Repair leaky faucets and toilets throughout the school building.
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Encourage maintenance staff to avoid using hoses or pressure washers to clean sidewalks and other paved areas.
Never allow water to run unnecessarily, and avoid using the toilet as a trash can.
Avoid overuse of the air conditioning – the harder it works, the more water (and energy! ) is used to cool the building.
Encourage your school’s cafeteria staff to avoid using trays when possible. Fewer items to wash means less water is used to wash them!
Research the water needs of the plants currently found on the school grounds. Determine how often they require water, and request that maintenance staff only water the plants and grounds as required by the plants.
Make sure sprinkler systems are watering plants and not spraying water onto sidewalks or other paved areas.
Develop a poster campaign to help educate the school community on water-conserving behaviors such as repairing leaks, turning off the water while washing hands, avoiding overuse of air conditioning, landscaping with native plants, etc.
Install faucet aerators, low-flow showerheads and other water-saving devices throughout the school. Construct a rain garden or native plants garden on the school grounds. Install rain barrels on school grounds. Place mulch around plants to reduce evaporation. Install timers and moisture sensors on irrigation equipment used on school grounds. Research the WaterSense program and encourage the school administration to purchase WaterSense products when equipment needs replacing. Be Water and Energy Wise!
Set the classroom (or school-wide) thermostat so it is slightly warmer in the summer and cooler in the winter.
Start a carpooling program at your school and encourage students to ride the school bus or carpool rather than having their individual parents drive them to school.
If your classroom has windows and gets plenty of natural light, open the blinds and turn off the lights when not required. Check for and repair leaks around windows and doors where air conditioning and heat can escape.
Plug all computers, televisions, printers, copiers, and other equipment into power strips, and turn off the strips when the devices are not in use. Even when turned off, many electronics use energy even when they're in standby mode.
Pack lunches (in reusable containers! ) that don’t require heating.
Ensure that heating and cooling vents are clear of obstruction.
Create a schedule and put students in charge of turning off energy-consuming devices in the classroom (printers, computers, lights, etc. ). Increase the amount of insulation on water heaters and hot water pipes. Develop a poster campaign to help educate the school community on energy-conserving behaviors such as turning off lights, computers, and other equipment when not in use, keeping doors and windows closed to reduce heating and cooling system waste, washing clothes and dishes in full loads using cold water, etc. Replace classroom light bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs. ? Research the Energy Star program and encourage the school administration to purchase Energy Star products when equipment needs replacing. ? Plant deciduous trees around the school building. Trees help reduce heating and cooling costs by shading the building during warm months and by providing a wind break during the winter.