Tips for Your WorkdayCopyright: © Martin Braun
RWTH wants to promote sustainable habits and further develop the University as an attractive place and space for togetherness. Below you will find tips on various topics for your everyday work life: Mobility, Energy, Procurement, Waste Disposal, Water, Eating, and Drinking. These are intended to give you, the members of the University, ideas on how you too can contribute to a more sustainable RWTH.
Do you have other ideas for a more sustainable workday? Please let us know!
Tips for the Workday
- Come to work on foot or by bicycle
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Too many floors? Take the stairs on your way down or get out of the elevator a few floors earlier and take the stairs the rest of the way.
- Create a carpool group. Or use Park and Ride.
Further information is available on the Visiting RWTH and Getting Around page.
- For medium distances, consider an e-bike instead of your car.
- Business trips: Check whether it is really necessary to fly – the FlugreisenGo decision tree can help you here.
Please visit our Energy Saving Tips web page for further information!
- Order organic/fair-trade products via the RWTH Purchasing Portal and also choose green alternatives for office materials.
- Use the instructions on the environment and sustainability in the Intranet Offer of Division 7.3 – Central Purchasing
- Environmental and sustainability aspects can be required at four different levels in the tendering and awarding process: Suitability criteria, special requirements for the performance of the service, minimum requirements for the product (e.g.), award/award criteria.
- Questionnaire for the tenderer
- Find out about options for considering sustainability aspects when buying products: Fact Sheet for Sustainable Purchases at RWTH
- If necessary, look up sources of information for sustainable purchases
- Avoid waste in the first place. Use your own containers (cups, bottles, cans) for food and drinks to avoid disposable packaging.
For example, drink tap water instead of bottled water. Tap water in RWTH buildings is tested regularly and can normally be consumed directly. Especially in old buildings, let the water run for a short time first to avoid your drinking water being in the faucet for a long time. If you notice that the water is getting cooler, you can drink it without further restrictions.
- Consider whether a document, an email really needs to be printed – and encourage others to think about it by adding the following line to your signature:
Please consider the environment before printing this email
- Set the default settings for your workstation printer to black and white and double-sided to save paper as well.
Quick guide: Open Explorer: Printer & Scanner → Select Device → Manage → Printer Settings.
- Reuse products or look for reusable alternatives. For example, reusing a box for shipping a second time can save 47 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in this situation.
- To properly dispose of the waste you generate, use the services offered by the 11.01 Waste Management Service Center – SCA) as needed.
- Provision of containers for recyclable materials (mixed: plastic, wood, metal), which are emptied regularly or following a phone call
- Containers for individual fractions (glass, electrical waste, construction waste, wood, metals, shavings, etc.)
- Possibility to drop off waste at the SCA
- Regular collection of special waste (used tires, fluorescent tubes, toner cartridges, data protection media, styrofoam, etc.)
- Individual consulting, e.g. of institutes by the SCA/waste management officer regarding the disposal of new/"difficult" waste
Use water sparingly
Turn off the faucet as soon as possible and also while soaping your hands.
Do not use the toilet as a trash can
Contact lenses, tampons, etc. do not belong there!
Drink tap water instead of bottled water
Tap water in RWTH buildings is regularly tested and can normally be consumed directly. Especially in old buildings, let the water run for a short time first to avoid your drinking water being in the tap for a long time. If you notice the water getting cooler, you can drink it without further restrictions.
Eating and drinking
- Use your own cup for coffee or tea and not takeout cups.
- Choose vegetarian or vegan options in the dining halls/restaurants.
- Eat fish from sustainable sources (look for the MSC or ASC labels).
- Drink tap water instead of bottled water.
- Waste as little food as possible. Often, food can be enjoyed beyond its best-by date. Find out more about this at the German Ministry of Food and Agriculture, for example, or get inspired at Zu gut für die Tonne (Too good for the garbage).