The University of Toledo Office of Sustainability

Sustainable actions



Become a minimalist

Minimalism is a lifestyle of simple living but not without luxury.  It is about personal choices that focus on an item’s value not accumulation, less stress, and quality of life.  By removing the excess, you’ll become less wasteful and help yourself plus the community.  Avoid the “what you own, owns you” trap.  Live well and do no harm. 

Save energy, save the environment 

An obvious tenet to live by but there’s a selfish reason besides to save energy – to save your money for something better.  By turning your home air conditioning off or to a minimum temperature, you could save $50+ per month – a nice night out.  Now the accumulative effect is that each time you “turn it off”, you minimize your environmental impact.  You can have a comfortable home or apartment and do less environmental harm. 

Recycle like a Rockstar 

Whether at home or on campus, recycle plastics #1 and #2, cardboard and paper, and metals.  Other items are not as easily recycled or can’t be at all – minimize those.  A simpler way to make a difference is to avoid single use plastics – grocery bags, straws, water bottles, etc.  Not that you need to bring your own bags, just use less.  Not that you need to not use a straw, just use one for to go cups not in restaurant water glasses.  Not that you can’t use disposable water bottles, just reuse them or carry your own reusable one.    


Walk Run Bike 

Cars are a wonderful invention that transport us quickly and safely from point A to point B but what have they done for you other than speed up your life.  Moving is one of the joys of life – just look at any baby and their excitement as they roll over, crawl, then walk, and the run.  Find your inner child and walk 10 minutes a day and find joy in doing.  This one is all about you and as you walk, run, or bike more, you’ll selfishly see personal benefits.  The side impact is that by using the car less, we do less environmental harm. 


Say “Hi” to people  

We are preserving the environment for our and future generations of people.  There’s a bit of joy in just celebrating with a friendly greeting as you walk around campus.  Positive engagement will build better communities.


Last Updated: 6/27/22