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Indian Health Service The Federal Health Program for American Indians and Alaska Natives

Environmental Sustainability

What Can I Do?

Every individual has a responsibility to do their part in caring for the environment. IHS employees have been proactive in their sustainability efforts, as exemplified by the Green Champions.

Green tips are periodically posted to the Sustainability Website. Staff can easily implement these Green Tips to be more sustainable in their homes or workplaces.

In Your Home:

  • Turn off the tap while brushing your teeth or scrubbing the dishes
  • Buy concentrated cleaning products which are generally less expensive and use less packaging; but clean just as thoroughly
  • Spritz cleaners on cloth, not surfaces
  • Bring reusable bags to the store
  • Wash your clothes in cold instead of hot/warm water
  • Hang-dry clothes to reduce use of the dryer
  • Dress appropriately for the seasons and set your thermostat a few degrees lower in the winter and a few degrees higher in the summer
  • Unplug appliances (e.g., coffeemaker) and electronics (e.g., TV) when not in use

In Your Workplace:

  • Read things on the computer rather than printing them out; or choose double-sided and black and white printing options
  • Use the energy-saving settings on your computer and turn it off at night, including the monitor
  • Bring your lunch/coffee in reusable containers/mugs
  • Bring a reusable water bottle (preferably aluminum) and refill at the water fountain
  • Carpool or use alternative transportation (e.g., public transportation)
  • Recycle your paper, cardboard, and beverage containers
  • Turn off lights when you leave a room and at your desk when you leave for the day

Start a Green Team

A Green Team is a group of employees taking the initiative to meet sustainability goals. Members can include anyone who wants to get involved - be it from Facilities, IT, Administration, or Procurement. Not sure how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, energy and water consumption, or waste with a Green Team? View the IHS Recycling Guidance [PDF - 1.6 MB] to get started.

Want to know more about sustainability and IHS initiatives? Sign up HERE to receive notices!

Additional Resources:

  • ENERGY STAR Qualified Products Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov : If you make purchasing decisions, look for ENERGY STAR qualified office equipment such as computers, copiers, and printers; lighting, heating and cooling equipment; as well as and commercial appliances.
  • Household Hazardous Waste Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov : Learn about reduction, reuse, recycling, and disposal options of household hazardous waste.