Our offices are participating in the Greening of the Capitol Program and we have joined the Wave One Project and became Green Certified by the Bay Area Green Business Program on February 6, 2009 for demonstrating to the community environmental responsibility through compliance, resource conservation and pollution prevention. Our District Office is in the process of becoming 100 percent Palo Alto Green as a Power Participant. We are fully committed to reducing our carbon footprint and doing our part to conserve energy and protect our environment. This requires all staff to participate in our green office policy to reduce waste, recycle, promote energy conservation, conserve water and prevent pollution.
Congresswoman Eshoo has been an innovator and leader in Congress when it comes to green policy. She was the Member of Congress who introduced and successfully passed electronic signatures legislation (H.R. 2991 introduced November 9, 1997) saving her constituents, companies and the nation millions of dollars and dramatically reducing the amount of paper used for legal documents.
This year the House is set to consider historic energy legislation, the American Clean Energy and Security (ACES) Act of 2009.
To see a summary of the bill, click here .
To see a list of steps our office is taking and how you can reduce your carbon footprint, see below.
Waste Reduction and Recycling
- All electronic title signatures include the "think before you print" message at the bottom of all outgoing emails in addition to asking constituents to sign-up for Congresswoman Eshoo's electronic newsletters. All copier and printers set default to double-sided.
- Print efficiently by printing two pages of a document onto one page.
- Use our scanner/fax feature on our copy machine to send documents electronically rather than printing them.
- Do not use cover sheets when faxing documents but use the "sticky fax directory notes located on the fax machines.
0. Encourage constituents to fill-out electronic forms on the Eshoo Website and email them to us rather than mailing hard copies or faxing them.
- Use our electronic Intranet and email for internal memos as our virtual bulletin board.
- Reduce all unwanted mailings. Make sure to remove duplicates in our date base. Update the stop junk mail.org and catalogchoice.org website to reduce incoming junk mail.
- Only order one manual for multiple software packages.
- Use office Intranet for online journals, papers, and online clips to share with staff.
- Design handouts and forms that require no envelopes.
- Buy products in returnable or reusable containers. Work with vendors to reduce packaging.
- No use of non-recyclable packaging like styrofoam.
- Use only permanent items (coffee mugs, utensils, towels and refillable containers for sugar, salt and pepper (no individual condiment packages). Use reusable serving dishes.
- No single-use plastic bottles are to be used.
- Only staff in each office is allowed to purchase to eliminate unnecessary purchases and ensure all waste reduction purchasing policies are followed.
- Lease computers and printers when possible.
- Print on previously printed paper using our designated tray on the printer.
- Reuse our used office paper as scratch paper (see box by printer).
- Reuse envelopes, paper and packaging materials.
- Reuse office supplies like binders, folders, staplers located in the closet near the fax machine.
- Always reuse garbage bags, reuse toner cartridges and get them refilled.
- Continue to return used furniture to GSA who recycles to other offices.
- Donate used computers to charity.
- Recycle ALL OF THE FOLLOWING: Cardboard, newspapers, mixed paper, junk mail, glass bottles, jars, metal cans, containers, foil, plastics, wood, electronic equipment, batteries, spent fluorescent light tubes.
- Purchase only 100 percent post-consumer recycled products such as paper, folders, letterheads, envelopes, business cards, paper towels, tissues, toilet paper, covers, garbage bags, boxes.
- Use signage on printers etc…reminding staff to think before they print.
- Work with landlord and House Management to make sure our HVAC is scheduled for regular maintenance, clean filters with mild detergents every two months, check for leaks, and keep coils free of dust.
- Use energy star products (replaced old refrigerator) and review copy, fax and computer systems.
- Set systems to automatically turn off idle monitors and printers.
- Insulate pipes, use booster heater, and gas heaters. Work with landlord and House Management to enforce lighting conservation. Open shades, replace old t-12 and incandescent bulbs, reduce number of fixtures used, and use dimmable ballasts.
0. ALL electronic devices and lighting MUST BE TURNED OFF when not in use.
- Thermostat set to 78 degrees F for cooling and 68 degrees for heating.
- Seal off spaces not in use.
- Use signage to remind staff to turn off lights etc before departing.
- Landlord will monitor water bill.
- Staff to report any leaks asap to management.
- Use signage encouraging water conservation.
- Have water company brief staff on how to save in office and at home (requested).
- All pollutants removed from food, service and storage areas
- Check closets for leaks and report
- Store all products under roof
- Keep dumpsters covered
- Do not wash cars, etc. where storm water flows
- Continue to be a non-smoking office
- Use only pump dispensers (no aerosols)
- Buy in bulk
- No standard fluorescent lights
- Use only rechargeable batteries
- Use unbleached and chlorine-free products
- Replace toxic ink pens with water based one
- Do business with other green vendors
- Do not use chemical pesticides
- Use only used copier toner cartridges (recycle and refill)
- Donate for reuse electronic equipment
- We are a Member of Spare the Air
- Use singe vendor for deliveries
- Patronize local places by walking to lunch
- We hire locally
- Our only official car is a hybrid
- Post transit schedules
- Staff is encouraged to use public transit and can be reimbursed for commute expenses up to $100 a month with verification.
- Staff also car pools and rides their bikes to work
- Offices are located close to light rail stops
- Offices participate in the 100 percent Palo Alto Green Power and the Greening the Capitol Programs and are being trained to help other offices become green certified.
- Staff will be awarded an annual prize for doing their share to help us set a "green standard" of excellence. This includes challenging all of us to think about ways in which our congressional work can become greener using new technologies etc.
Water Conservation Resources
Santa Clara Valley Water District
Mid-Peninsula Water District
Coastside County Water District
Scotts Valley Water District
Green Business Resources
San Mateo County Green Business Program
Santa Clara County Green Business Program
The Green Business Program - Santa Cruz County
Palo Alto Zero Waste Program