Welcome to Sustainability Office FAQ!

On this page, you will find answers to common questions about sustainability at OSU. If you have questions not addressed below, please feel free to contact the Sustainability Office

FAQ

OSU staff are exploring options for a transition to electric leaf blowers, but there are several barriers to making this switch right away.  Depending on application, electric blowers can have higher life cycle environmental impacts than gasoline blowers due to the short life of lithium batteries in this type of application.  The lithium batteries used in electric leaf blowers have high upstream and downstream impacts and are expensive to replace. Electric blowers still don’t have the same power to move large quantities of wet leaves, which pose a slipping hazard. Also, electric blowers are often heavier, causing ergonomic concerns for workers.
 
It’s likely OSU will try electric blowers in some locations over the next year or two, reserving them for lighter duty, dry conditions, and more noise-sensitive areas.  In the meantime, gasoline blowers are needed for heavy-duty jobs.  While gasoline blowers are associated with negative climate impacts and do cause local air pollution, they are not a significant contributor to carbon emissions compared to other OSU operations, many of which are much more cost effective to reduce.  Updated information about a transition to electric leaf blowers and/or non-motorized solutions will be shared on this page when available. For more info, check out this article in the Campus Directions newsletter.

Yes! The OSU Sustainability Council is a new departmental program hosted by the Sustainability Office and Community Engagement & Leadership. The Council exists to connect student clubs and organizations - and individual students passionate about sustainability - to advance student and university goals around sustainability and social justice. It serves as a hub for peer-to-peer student engagement on sustainability topics and collective action with opportunities for meaningful experiential learning. Learn more about Sustainability Council here.

All Corvallis community members are encouraged to check out the Corvallis Sustainability Coalition’s ReUse Directory to find local businesses and organizations that accept reusable items or offer repair services.
If you are a student living in the residence halls, the annual Great Move-Out Donation Drive in June (organized by OSU Surplus Property, Campus Recycling, and University Housing and Dining) offers students an easy way to donate the items they no longer need while moving out, which then get redistributed to community nonprofits and the OSUsed Store to recoup costs.
Please note: All OSU-owned property must go through Surplus Property to be disposed. Learn more and make Surplus pick-up requests here.

Check out the Guide For Low Waste Events – developed by experts from University Catering, University Events, Memorial Union, Campus Recycling, and Student Experiences and Engagement – for tips on reducing food and material waste from events. 

Reach out to Green Girl on Facebook if you would like to borrow free dishes and utensils for your event!

Visit the Borrowables page to view items available for borrowing from the university.