Center for Campus Life

Green Choices

Green Choices

Energy Saving Updates- Recently the Hoff Theater had the overhead lighting updated.  The old lights were 150-watt light bulbs; the new are 19-watt LED lights. The meeting rooms have also had energy saving lights installed.  23-watt LED light bulbs have replaced the old 150-watt lights.  PEPCO has offered a rebate for completing these updates and the Stamp Student Union is receiving about half the money back that was spent on the new lights.

Chef's Garden - The two long planters in front of the Stamp Student Union are being converted to an herb garden for the University of Maryland’s Executive Chef.  The herbs in this garden will be used in fabulous dishes created by Good Tydings Catering in the Stamp.  The topsoil should be coming next week and many of the herbs are already growing in the campus green house.  An assortment of adult herb plants from a nearby nursery will make  the garden  fairly well established by Maryland Day.  Rain barrels are being installed as a sustainable way to keep the plants watered since there are currently rain gutters at the corner of both planters.  This herb garden is a fantastic way the Stamp Student Union is complying with the University’s goal of being more sustainable.  No longer will herbs need to be shipped in, cutting back on carbon emissions and the rain barrels will help limit urban runoff.  This project is another great collaboration between The Stamp, Dining Services and Arboretum/Horticultural Services.

Composting - Catering and Food Court vendors in The Stamp have composted for years.  At the beginning of the fall 2012 semester, The Stamp introduced a post-consumer composting option in the food court by combining all trash cans and recycle bins in to 3 stream sorting stations.  Please take a few minutes to watch our informational and instructional video on post-consumer composting in The Stamp food court.  Your participation is the key to success!  compost video.  

Also, Peer educators are needed to help inform students about the new system. If you are interested sign up here!

Green Office - Each unit in The Stamp has recently appointed a "Green Office (GO)" representative and are in a race to reach Gold level certification in the University's Green Office program. Stamp Facilities is proud to announce they have reached Silver level certification and is now working for Gold. For more information on the Green Office program, click here


Battery Bin - Good for all alkaline battery types. Located by the info desk, it is accessible to staff and students. When the bin is 3/4 full, Stamp emails recycle@umd.edu for a pick up. Another 'green' step forward!

Hydration Station - The Stamp is happy to announce you can fill your water bottle at our new hydration station. This eco-friendly addition to the Stamp will be located on the ground floor near the Hoff Theater, around the corner from Chick-fil-A. Each glass is freshly filtered and instantly chilled in a sealed system. Clean, Simple, Smart, Green.

Paint Test - We’re testing “Armorwall 300” an interior wall coating that satisfies LEED credits for low emitting materials. In addition Green Seal certification has been applied for. Additionally, this paint has a very high “scrub rating”, being able to withstand 300 scrubbings without scratching. This enables us to clean the walls more often and repaint less often, saving the cost ($ and environmental) of additional painting. Our trial area is in the ground floor hallway outside of the Office of Campus Programs (room 0110) beginning at their entrance doors, including the west elevator lobby to the corner by the bank. Our plan is to monitor this area over a 6-12 month period, then decide If we want to expand this trial to other areas of the building. Go to their website


Plastic Recycling - We are pleased to share with everyone that Facilities Management now has a way to recycle alltypes of plastic. In the past our recycling has been limited to #1 and #2 plastics, but now anything plastic can be recycled. The only restriction is that any food containers must be clean prior to being placed in the recycling cans. Here in the Stamp, most of our plastic recycling containers have round holes, a little larger than a typical soda bottle.

RecycleMania - Recyclemania contest has begun. This is a nationwide competition among colleges and universities to see who can recycle the most in a number of different categories. Between now and the end of March we will calculate the total amount of recyclables collected on campus. These numbers will be compared to what other campuses are doing. See the flyer for more information and remember this is a great time to clean out your office and recycle all those old magazines, files and the like. To encourage everyone to recycle, there is a “Caught you green handed” campaign where if you are caught recycling, you can enter a raffle for various prizes. Staff in our own food court are on the look out for recyclers to catch green handed, so pitch in and helps us!

RecycleMania Update - TERPS - In the ACC, Maryland placed in the Grand Champion Top 3 bumping UNC Chapel Hill from the #3 spot. In the State of Maryland, TERPS Hang in 2nd Place. Click here for our latest progress report.

Green Roof - The Atrium and Prince George's Room Green Roofs are undergoing renovations to replace the growth media (material that the sedum is planted in).  The original roof installation in 2009 failed in essence by disintegrating to ‘fine’ and preventing the plants from flourishing.  In conjunction with the Department of Plant Science & Landscape Architecture, Stamp brought in The Furbish Company, an industry leader in green roof installations who began the process of removing the old growth media this week.   The Stamp recently took delivery of 2 tons of new scientifically engineered growth media that we will be putting in place in March 2013…  Stamp has also been awarded a grant from University Sustainability Fund to partner with us on re-installation of the green roofs.  We hope to have our new and improved Green Roofs above the Atrium and PG Rooms back in place by Maryland Day.   Once in place, Stamp has entered in to a stewardship program with  Plant Science faculty and The Furbish Company to use the new system as  ‘learning research labs’ for their students and which will also help to insure long term success!

Water Conserving Faucets - Bathroom faucets in the Stamp Student Union were recently replaced to save water, electricity, maintenance costs and to make the bathrooms more hygienic. The previous faucets, which were a traditional style faucet with leavers that turn on/off the water, were replaced with faucets that only run water when they sense users' hands under the spout. These new faucets use about 70% less water than the old faucets because they cannot be left running and they are regulated to use only 0.5 gallons per minute versus the 1.0 gallons per minute flow rate for a traditional faucet. This means the 102 new faucets in the Union are saving approximately 1,193,400 gallons of water per year. Also, considering the tremendous amount of energy required to heat water, these new faucets also save more than 29 million BTU of energy each year. The total project cost of $26,000 will be paid back through savings in a little more than two years.

Sustainable Carpets - The Stamp Student Union is gradually replacing carpet with a very environmentally preferable carpet that boasts various benefits. First, it is cleaned with only hot water – it requires no detergents or shampoos. This cuts down considerably on chemical use and simplifies the cleaning process. Second, the carpet is made of eco-friendly materials. The face fiber and backing are certified as Environmentally Preferable Products (EPP). The backing also contains bio-based renewable resources and contains 20% post consumer recycled content. Third, the carpet is installed with a low volatile organic compound (VOC) adhesive, which means better indoor air quality for visitors and employees of the Union. Fourth, at the end of its use, the carpet can be removed and recycled into new carpet, thus minimizing the amount of new material that has to be harvested or manufactured for the carpet industry

Green Cleaning – Throughout the building we use mostly green cleaning chemicals and methods. These are environmentally friendly, renewable or otherwise green. Our cleaning philosophy is to use the smallest amount of the most environmentally friendly products and chemicals, using stronger concentrations or chemicals only if needed.

Lighting – We will soon be switching high efficiency ballasts for the lighting used in the Stamp. These ballasts provide the same level of light as regular ballasts, but more efficiently and uses less energy. These high efficiency ballasts can save the Stamp approximately one dollar per lamp per year. It might not sound like much, but when you add up all the lamps the Stamp uses, a lot of money and energy is saved.

Living Green Off-Campus – It’s easy being green! Follow these simple tips to reduce your carbon footprint and save money! Click here to learn more.

Electric Hand Dryers – In addition to the water conserving faucets, the restrooms located in the Stamp will contain high efficiency electric hand dryers. These hand dryers will eventually replace paper towel dispensers, which will greatly reduce the amount of paper products the Stamp uses.

Floor Protection – We have recently invested in a new floor protector that is more durable than wax. This material will drastically reduce the amount of chemicals we use annually to maintain our floors.

Recycling Containers – We are excited to announce that we will retrofit recycling containers to align with the Single Stream Recycling Program the University is implementing around campus.

Water Bottle Filling Spouts –  In addition to the many hydration stations located around the Stamp, we will also be installing water bottle filling spouts at all water fountains. This will encourage people to bring their own water containers or reuse their empty water bottles instead of throwing them away.

The Stamp is a supporter of the University of Maryland Office of Sustainability.  Learn more about University sustainable initiatives on their website: http://www.sustainability.umd.edu/