Wake Forest University

Sustainability at Wake Forest

Winter Break Energy Conservation


Winter Break Energy Conservation

December 14th, 2017

In an effort to conserve energy over the winter holiday period, Facilities & Campus Services will implement our annual temperature setback program for academic and administrative buildings starting Friday, December 22 at approximately 5pm. The setback program will maintain building temperatures at a minimum of 55°F during the holiday period. Facilities & Campus Services intends to have all buildings at 70°F by the time employees arrive at work on January 2.

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ReCycle End of Semester Bike Return

November 28th, 2017
Calling all ReCycle bikeshare participants! Your bike is in need of some TLC over winter break. Use this form to sign up for a time slot between December 4 – 6 to return your bike to Outdoor Pursuits (located in the Sutton Center). Please note that bikes will be distributed back to participants at the beginning of the spring semester.

Where Are They Now: Jenny Miller (’14)

November 17th, 2017

by Office of Sustainability Staff Writer Suzy Mullins (’18)

From a very young age, Wake Forest alumna Jenny Miller knew she had a passion for the environment. Growing up on a tree farm in southwestern Virginia, she spent most of her early years exploring the countryside, observing animals in their natural habitat, and marveling at the miracles of nature. Over the course of her lifetime, Jenny reflects on how the environment has changed in ways she never could have imagined as a child. “Witnessing this degradation motivated me to work in a sustainability field,” says Miller. “I want to protect the environment I grew to love so that future generations can experience its wonder in the years to come.”

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Parking and Transportation Now Transportation and Parking Services

November 8th, 2017

by Office of Sustainability Staff Writer Suzy Mullins (’18)

While Parking and Transportation may conjure anxieties about parking tickets and fees for some, the department’s new name reflects a different focus. According to WFU Transportation Manager Arian Bryant, the switch to Transportation and Parking Services highlights the importance of providing the Wake Forest community with a variety of convenient and alternative transportation options.

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FAQ: Fire Pit Outside Farrell Hall

November 7th, 2017

Q: Does the fire pit outside of Farrell Hall operate on a fixed schedule? 

A: Generally, the fire pit remains on and running from October 1 – March 31 from 9:00 am until 6:30 pm. The fire pit does not operate on weekends (unless there is a special request) or during inclement weather. For the rest of the year, the fire pit is turned off and covered. 

Call for Spring 2018 Interns

November 3rd, 2017

Are you a student interested in making a difference and gaining professional development experience? The following paid opportunities are available to all Wake Forest University undergraduate students. Unless otherwise indicated, all positions are with the Office of Sustainability and begin in January 2018. Pending student availability and individual evaluations at the conclusion of the Spring 2018 semester, internships and assistantships may be extended into the following school year.

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Take Action to Draw Down Greenhouse Gas Emissions

October 31st, 2017

Inspired by a talk given by Drawdown senior writer, Katharine Wilkinson

We are already experiencing the effects of climate change— temperatures are rising, precipitation patterns are shifting, and more extreme climate events are occurring around the globe. These changes are linked to the rising levels of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in our atmosphere. The good news? There’s still hope. That’s our takeaway from studying Drawdown and engaging with the book’s senior writer, Dr. Katharine Wilkinson, during her visit to Wake Forest on October 5.

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FAQ: Vampire Energy

October 31st, 2017

Q: What is vampire energy?

A: Even when turned off, electronics still use energy if they’re plugged into a power outlet. It may not seem like much, but over time, it can really add up. This “vampire energy” is drained by laptop chargers, cell phone chargers, TVs, video game systems, and other electronics. You can help slay these vampires by unplugging devices when they’re fully charged, leaving cords out of the outlets if you won’t be using them for a while, and using power strips that can be switched off.

FAQ: Composting at Events

October 26th, 2017

Q: My student organization/department/office is hosting a special event and we’d like to compost. Where do I start?

A: Whether it’s a small or large event, composting can be accomplished. First, be sure to request compost bins by placing a work order through Facilities and Campus Services for the number of compost bins you would like. Be sure to include the date of the event, the time you would like bins to be there, and an expected end time. Then, be sure to contact the Office of Sustainability (sustainability@wfu.edu). The Office of Sustainability can ensure that volunteers are present at your event to help guests properly sort their waste. This is recommended for every large event.

If your event is being catered, be sure to speak with the catering team about providing compostable dishware and silverware. Better yet, request reusable dishware and silverware if your budget allows. If you’re in a pinch and need to purchase your own dishware/silverware, know that only certified compostable utensils made from either corn, sugar or potato starch are the only utensils that can be composted. A list of ASTM D6400 or ASTM 6868 certified products are available at The Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI). Additionally, most grocery stores carry paper plates and bowls that are compostable. Some are labeled as such, but as long as they are paper based and do not have a waxy coating they should be OK to compost.

At the end of the event, be sure to take your collected compostable items to the loading dock of Reynolda Hall outside of the Fresh Food Company. Here you will see compost bins marked for Gallins Family Farms. Place all collected materials for composting in these bins.

Note that Gallins Family Farms can compost meat, dairy, citrus, and bones as these materials break down in a commercial facility.

Author Offers New Approach To Climate Change

October 23rd, 2017


Typically, electric bikes and household recycling are not perceived to be major climate change solutions. However, according to Katharine Wilkinson, these two examples serve as viable mechanisms to reverse the impact of climate change.

Katharine Wilkinson, senior writer of The New York Times’ bestseller Drawdown, presented her book to an auditorium full of students, professors and locals Thursday, Oct. 5 in the Porter Byrum Welcome Center.

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