Green Department Guidelines

The Department of Meteorology acknowledges that humans are having an impact on our atmosphere, oceans and biosphere. Scientific research suggests that if left unchecked, rising levels of greenhouse gases will produce significant negative impacts on our social and biological systems within the next century. It is also clear that the world's resources are being consumed at a rate this is not sustainable, and that access to drinking water, clean air and food will become more challenging in the future.

At present, local, national and international, efforts are focused on mitigating negative impacts on our environment. The Department of Meteorology, while focused on atmospheric research and teaching, also recognize that concrete steps are required to reduce our environmental footprint.

To demonstrate our commitment towards environmental sustainability and as an educational experience for our community, the following guidelines, also know as our Green Department Guidelines , have been approved by the department and suggest actions in the following areas for all Meteorology faculty, staff and students.

Pollution and Greenhouse Gas Reduction:

  • Encourage faculty, staff and students to reduce transportation emissions through carpooling, riding public transport, biking or walking to campus.
  • Encourage staff and student to patronize services (food service, copy centers etc.) close to campus.
  • Encourage faculty staff and students to look at telecommunication opportunities to avoid unnecessary trips to campus.
  • Encourage faculty and staff to consider purchasing renewable energy certificates (also sometimes called greentags or green certificates) to offset carbon emissions associated with work related airline or automobile travel.

Reduction of Electricity Use:

  • Ensure that department computers utilize power management utilities to reduce energy use.
  • Migrate computers and computer monitors to energy efficient models.
  • Encourage faculty, staff and students to turn off lights when not in use.
  • Use a time-switch in all suitable occasions for printers, copiers etc to turn off after working hours.


  • Create recycling centers in Main Office and DH614, and provide recycling bins to each faculty, staff and grad students. In each center, have separate bins for a) paper with one side blank, b) paper for recycling including newspaper, mixed paper, junk mail etc.), recyclable beverage containers (glass, recyclable plastic), d) trash. A green waste bucket will be available in the main office and will be picked up at least twice per week.


  • The department will purchase recycled paper that contains at least 25% post consumer waste for all photocopying.
  • Purchase future paper products (letterhead, brochures etc.) using at least 25% recycled content and consider using soy-based inks in these materials when possible.

Reduction of Paper Use:

  • Make two-sided printing/photocopying standard practice (set printers to default with 2-sided printing)
  • Reuse paper that has been printed on one side. Use back sides as much as possible and publicly available when appropriate. When reusing this paper, strike through the printed side so that users know the other side is free to use. Also, do not reuse printed paper with confidential information (eg. Student names, financial information etc.)
  • Eliminate cover sheets from printing options.
  • Eliminate fax cover sheets by using 'sticky' fax notes to add contact details.

Reduction of Waste Generation:

  • Eliminate the use of disposable plastic for cups, plates, or utensils. Either use reusable materials (mugs, forks etc.) or biodegradable products.
  • Encourage all faculty, staff and students to use their own cups/mugs when visiting local coffee/drink shops.

San Jose State University Department of Meteorology, Duncan Hall 620
Phone: 408.924.5200 Email: