What Is a Sustainable School?
You may have heard the word “sustainability” a lot recently, and as a facility manager of a school, you may be wondering how you can make your school more sustainable. Many educational facilities across the country have been implementing sustainability and green plans to make their schools more eco-friendly and energy efficient. But what makes a school sustainable?
What Makes a School Sustainable?
In recent years, many organizations and schools have begun taking the necessary steps to reduce their carbon footprint though various means. The most popular route that schools have taken is with recycling. Ramping up their recycling process, and even hosting recycling-oriented events have proven successful in not only reducing waste, but also educating students on the environmental benefits of properly recycling their trash.
While recycling is effective at reducing waste and taking the necessary step toward eco-conscious practices, there are other ways that schools have made their facilities more sustainable. Cutting down on unnecessary energy by opening the windows during particularly nice days and utilizing non-toxic cleaning materials and school supplies have become popular practices. Even implementing green materials during renovations have proven to be highly effective.
Making Your School Sustainable
Taking the necessary steps toward making your school sustainable has numerous benefits, including student health, reducing waste, conserving energy, and helping the environment. There are many different ways that you, the facility manager, can help make your school more sustainable and eco-friendly.
Using Green Materials
Whenever you need to renovate or remodel a portion of your school, you should implement green building materials wherever you can. Green building materials can help you use your resources and energy more efficiently. Materials like cork flooring, solar hot water heaters, and even recycled carpeting go a long way in increasing your school’s sustainability. Updating your school’s corridors with HDPE (high-density polyethylene) lockers has numerous sustainability benefits, and they even last longer than traditional lockers due to their durability and rust/mildew resistance, resulting in effective lockers that require very little maintenance.
Cleaning Your Air
One of the scourges of the environment is poor air quality. Unless you’re regularly testing your air, you may be dealing with poor air in your school. Touching up or completely repainting sections of your school can release VOC (volatile organic compounds) emissions in your air, which over time can result in poor air quality and health complications.
Focusing on the Bathroom
One of the best ways that you can move your school into a greener direction is by updating your restrooms. Whenever there’s a drop in your school’s air quality, the restrooms tend to be ground zero. Due to the constant barrage of moisture and humidity, mold will sprout. If it’s on the walls and on the floor, it can be easily removed. However, mold could be inside the stalls and partitions, so you’ll need a more durable and eco-friendly replacement. Utilizing HDPE materials for your stalls will not only reduce the mold growth, but it’ll also increase the air quality of your restrooms for a long time.
Taking the necessary steps toward sustainability will not only reduce waste, but it’ll be more cost-effective and eco-friendly.
Want to learn more about how to make your school more sustainable? Read Sustainable Building Products: How to Make Your Facility Eco-Friendly from Top to Bottom, courtesy of Scranton Products.