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Green Strategies and Practices

To go green seems the only option today to counter the deleterious effects of climate change.it is clearly evident that continued environmental degradation has left the world grappling with economic, social and environmental challenges. Destructive human activities have disrupted nature cause leading to shortage of food, clean air, water and energy. The world has experienced natural calamities of unimaginable magnitudes as a direct result of climate change and other environmentally related phenomena. To reverse this trend, new strategies have to be adopted by all stakeholders. One of these strategies is adoption of green technologies in industrial, urban, rural and educational set ups. These strategies have proven effective in many parts of the world and if embraced universally could guarantee a favorable and accommodating planet to live in.Universities as leading community strategists need to lead the way by adopting environmentally sustainable models both at administrative and educative (student) level as well as coming up with innovations to help save the environment. There are various strategies and practices on going currently in some industrial and education sectors in many parts of the world which if adopted by all others will greatly help create a sustainable environment. Research in environmental issues under the United Nations Environmental Program is one of the many attempts stakeholders are using to try to solve these challenges. Formulation of policies by national governments, international treaties on sustainable environment and cultivation of eco-friendly cultures by the private sector are some of the notable efforts underway to preserve the environment.This paper will outline workable plans universities can adopt to be ecofriendly. The plan will be in reference to various green strategies and practices currently used in industry and education sectors. The aim is to create a plan for the University of Greenwich to enable her students go green. Green Strategies and Practices for the University Of Greenwich There exist various green strategies and practices in use today that the university of Greenwich could adopt to become as ecofriendly as practically possible. One major strategy is aiming at energy conservation. The use of high energy consuming facilities contributes to immense green house gas emmission.the university ought to encourage students to develop innovative energy saving approaches by offering the opportunity and required facilities and support from the faculty. The university should also ensure that buildings within the school and other infrastructures are modeled so as to be energy efficient in terms of waste disposal. This would entail constructing zero-waste as well as energy neutral infrastructure, such as the use of solar and wind energy generators. These are not only cheap to install and maintain but also have no known negative impact on the environment (Newman, 2011). Another strategy to save energy and ensure a clean environment would involve using a biomass heating system. This model uses organic matter such as wood chips and animal related materials to produce biodiesel, ethanol, pellets and other energy intermediaries. This system reduces green house gases such as nitrogen dioxide, carbon and sulfur dioxide emission by a significant percentage. Substantial amounts of the chips for fuel can cut electricity use by more than thirty percent and cut water usage by more than fifty percent (Miller, 2010). This would see the university save millions in recurrent expenditure. Recycling of water for irrigation purposes is a common environmentally friendly strategy in use among many industry and education institutions. Reclaiming water means the water used in the industrial processes or for cleaning in the education institutions is not left to flow away into rivers or waste tanks but rather can be reused for more important functions such as farming and watering grass and flower gardens (Miller, 2010). The University of Greenwich could collect all water used within her premises and re-utilize it in other activities. This will in turn reduce wastage and promote sustainable use of water as a natural resource. The university could also employ rain water collection strategies. This water is stored in tanks and used for such purposes as flushing toilets and urinals as well as for floor cleaning, plants watering and irrigation. Curriculum development to incorporate studies on green technologies and practices at Greenwich University is necessary to help students understand and appreciate the importance of such practices in day to day life. This would entail refocusing on green training to enable graduates create green jobs in areas of renewable energy, sustainable agricultural techniques, building and construction with an aim to ensuring energy efficiency in modeling, creation of energy saving machines for use in manufacturing and transport as well as encouraging afforestation (Newman, 2011). This will in the long run lead to general protection of ecosystems and diversity, minimize environmental pollution and unnecessary water and energy wastage, and ensure sustained job opportunities. The university could also reach out to the surrounding community and provide relevant information on the same. A collaborative effort between the students and the community creates a sense of responsibility and cultivates the desire to improve on existing systems for the benefit of all. This will help find workable solutions to tackle climate and other environmental challenges affecting all stakeholders in the vicinity (Newman, 2011). In this era of computer technology in almost all life applications, the use and encouraging the use of green computing or green ICT is vital. Numerous firms and government agencies have adopted the use of green computing which entails using computers in an environmentally friendly set up. The aim of this new advancement is to reduce power consumption, hardware and soft ware waste to ensure sustainable and eco-friendly use of information and communication platforms (Lamb, 2009). Greenwich University could embrace such measures and formulate policies to promote its use as well as encouraging students to do more research on environmental projects such as this. Recycling is one of the most effective environmental sustainability methods. Many industries in the world have adopted this technique to reduce environmental degradation and reduce cost of production. Paper is one of the leading environmental polluters the world over. Statistics indicate that the making of new paper from recycled old papers saves energy by up to fifty percent. The process also reduces environmental pollution by more than ninety percent. Waste paper from commercial, education, and industrial institutions as well as residential use constitutes about forty percent of dumpsites. This means recycling the waste paper would increase the lifespans of these landfills. The Greenwich fraternity could ensure that any waste paper from the institution is collected in an organized manner and used for other activities such as manufacture of tissue paper, egg cartons, insulation and packaging material (Tisdell, 2005). Glass and plastic is another major pollutant. These two components are recalcitrant in nature and therefore take a very long time in the environment creating an eyesore and difficult solid waste management. Together with pieces of metal, these compounds contribute immensely to environmental degradation, yet they can be reused as many times as possible. Plastics can be recycled into bottles, flowerpots, recycle bins, paint brushes and drainage pipes. A majority of soft drink bottles and polyester floor covers and carpets in the world are made from recycled plastics. Recycling glass saves large amounts of energy when compared to manufacturing glass from direct raw materials. An extra advantage with glass is that it can be recycled as many times as possible without losing quality and or quantity. Waste metal can be successfully recycled for use in manufacturing cans, building materials and automobile parts. The university can adopt policies to ensure all plastics, glass and metals out of use by the school fraternity are deposited in a central location. This will go a long way in helping environmental protection. The materials when sold could also help earn the institution extra income that could be utilized in other environmentally beneficial projects (Tisdell, 2005).By inculcating this culture of recycling and environmental maintenance, the university would be creating individuals with an element of responsibility and caring for the environment. This can further be enhanced by creating awareness campaigns among the students on the importance of taking care of the environment.one such way that other institutions of learning have adopted is the” tree per student” project where every student is supposed to plant and maintain a seedling to maturity in an effort to create a favorable environment within the institutions of learning. This will help students to adapt this into their lifestyles as environmental conscious citizens (Miller, 2010).Students’ personal initiatives can greatly help in conserving the environment for sustainable and long-term use. There are thousands of students at the university and each individual’s effort will cumulatively contribute towards a better environment. Greenwich University could engage in include simple acts such as turning off the light when not in use. There is a tendency among university students to leave lights on or misuse electricity since they are charged a flat rate at the beginning of the academic year. This contributes to high energy wastage with the associated negative impact on the environment. Furthermore, the increase in energy charges eventually lead to hiking of housing costs. Wastage of water is also common with a significant number of students leaving taps running or using water in a reckless manner. If efforts are put by each student to conserve the water, a major contribution to environmental conservation will have been subconsciously made (Tisdell, 2005).Energy wastage through use of heaters or air conditioners depending on the weather is also a common scenario. Students at the university need to understand the impact of such activities and be responsible in use of such facilities. This saves a lot of energy, an integral environmental component. Use of alternative modes of transport by students residing out of campus such as riding bicycles, walking or using public service vehicles instead of driving private cars to school contributes to environmental conservation by reducing emission of lethal green house gases into the atmosphere (Tisdell, 2005).Students can contribute to eco-friendly programs by participating in policy formulation. Through formation of clubs and societies students from Greenwich University can effectively hold forums and discussions on environmental issues. These create necessary platforms to express opinions and strategies for advancement of environmental sustainability. By collaborating with the private sector, the university would create a link for the students to actualize their environmentally related projects which on commercialization could have universal impact in saving the environment (Tisdell, 2005).Conclusion Adoption of green practices and strategies by the Greenwich University among many other universities as discussed above will contribute immensely to a green world. The aspect of going green should be cultivated not only in the university but at primary school level. This will enhance development of children who are conscious of their environment. In a world faced with challenges of global warming and other environmental challenges it is vital that everyone plays a role in conserving the environment.Going green would mean embracing practices and strategies aimed at realizing an ecologically friendly surrounding. This may occur on various fronts such as sustainable agricultural practices, energy conservation, green building and construction, reclamation and recycling of usable commodities, reducing atmospheric pollution through activities such as burning charcoal and industrial and vehicular emission of green house gases, spared usage of scarce commodities such as water, planting trees and the eating of organic foods as opposed to artificially manufactured foods. All these activities are aimed at ensuring a sustainable environment to live in for now and for the generations to come. All stakeholders, from governments, private sector to individuals have a role to play in an effort to conserve and create a sustainable environment for the good of all mankind.

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