In order to conserve natural resources and to protect the environment, keep the 3 R’s – reduce, reuse & recycle – in mind as well as looking for products that have the following qualities when making purchases:
- Quality, function and product life-cycle costs are equal or superior to traditional products.
- Durable (long lasting, reusable, refillable, rechargeable), as opposed to single use or disposable items.
- Consider purchasing furniture and equipment from Pitt Surplus.
- Made of recycled materials, maximizing post-consumer content.
- Remanufactured products such as laser toner cartridges, tires, furniture, equipment and automotive parts when practical and cost-effective, without reducing safety or quality.
- Made from raw materials obtained in an environmentally sound sustainable manner.
- Non-toxic or minimally toxic, preferably biodegradable.
- Manufactured in an environmentally sound, sustainable manner.
- Minimizes water and energy use in operation.
- Causes minimal or no environmental damage during normal use or maintenance.
- Use of re-refined lubricating and industrial oil for equipment, if the product is certified by the American Petroleum Institute (API) as appropriate for use in such equipment.
Packaging and Shipping Considerations
- Shipped with minimal packaging, consistent with care of the product.
- Shipping and packaging materials should be made of recycled, reused, and recyclable materials.
- Produced locally or regionally to minimize the environmental costs associated with shipping.
- Available for purchase in multi-packs versus singles.
- Avoid air shipments.
- Consolidate several small orders into one larger order.
Product End-Of-Life Management Considerations
- Can it be recycled? Recyclable products can be demonstrably diverted from the University’s solid waste stream for use as a raw material in the manufacture of another product, preferably higher value uses.
- Can recycling occur in the immediate area?
- Can the product be reused? Reusable products can be used several times for an intended use before being discarded. For example, washable food/beverage containers or refillable ballpoint pens.
- If it cannot be recycled or reused, can it be disposed of safely?
- Product disposition should minimize materials that are sent to landfills.