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We admit it: Mom was right.

Mom’s advice has some real green cred.

Mother's Day was Sunday, May 14, so honor mom by listening to what she's been saying for years.

        

» Wipe your face! (It prevents waste)

In a recent waste study at one of our buildings, paper towels made up a third of the landfill waste. Switch to cloth! You can prevent waste by bringing a cloth napkin to work with your lunch. There are lots of actions you already do, show us and win a prize!

Over 150 of you came out to meet your Citywide Green Team: On Thursday, May 18, 2017 the Citywide Green Team held events in eight locations around the City. They asked staff what they do to keep waste out of the landfill. In exchange, staff were entered to win one of fifteen gift certificates.

A sample of what staff are doing (remember little things add up!):

  • A number of you use cloth napkins at home and many committed to bringing one to work.
  • Many bring lunch to work in a reusable container and committed to stop using plastic sandwich bags.
  • Some of you use reusable mesh produce bags and reusable shopping bags at home.
  • Some staff take extra plastics to Far West Fibers for recycling.
  • Oh so many of you bring a reusable coffee mug to work. Keep up the good work!

And the winners are…

Congratulations to the following staff who won a raffle prize. Lindsey Maser, BPS; Zach Odil, P&D; Tish Leos and Bernadette Landgdon, PBOT; Marianna Lomanto, ONI Crime Prevention; Mary Jaron Kelley and Tom Griffin-Valade, ONI North Portland Neighborhood Services; Sophia Terry and Clayton Amber, BES; Rose Imani, CityFleet; Sue Parsons, Auditor's office; Mary Schneider, ONI; and Ross Jonak, BDS.

And a free lunch goes to:

The Green Team wanted to know if dishtowels were already being used in workplace kitchens instead of paper towels. They asked staff to snap a photo and send a list of coworkers’ names who make it happen. That list was entered into a drawing for a free lunch. Congratulations to Portland Water Bureau Interstate Office staff Karen Scott and Anna DiBenedetto who manage the program for their office. 

Another free lunch just because:

Green Team staff received so many nice comments about this person and how she manages the BES dishtowels and women’s restroom at the Portland Building, that they made some money available for a second prize. Congratulations to BES staff, Jennifer Antak, for her commitment to this program.

» On your way out? Don't forget your coat!

An extra layer protects you from the cold — and the same rings true for your home and workplace. It’s called insulation and it makes a big difference: About 20 percent of all carbon emissions comes from our homes — on average, more than our cars. Making your home more energy efficient is good for you, too: It makes your home warmer in winter and cooler in summer (and lowers your energy bill). Whether your rent or own your home, there are many low-cost and no-cost options to make your home more energy efficient.

» Share your stuff!

Making, shipping and packaging the “stuff” we buy accounts for about a quarter of our city’s household carbon emissions. Borrowing seldom-used items saves money, cuts clutter and is great for the environment. Portland is filled with opportunities to borrow tools for home and garden projects, kitchen gadgets and kids’ toys from lending libraries.

» Keep it going, Portland!

There are lots of ways to cut waste in City operations. Over the last year, nearly 80 percent of City employees participated in the paperless paystub option. Making this choice has saved nearly 150,000 sheet of paper. That’s nearly 20 trees a year! Thank you OMF Bureau of Human Resources staff for giving us this option.

» Questions?

Your friends in the Citywide Green Team are ready to answer questions and provide resources. Visit www.portlandoregon.gov/bps/cityworksgreen or email greenteam@portlandoregon.gov.