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3,000 House Employees Learning to Go Green; Saving Energy & Money Takes Hold of Hill Culture

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Jan. 8, 2010

Washington, D.C. – The Office of the Chief Administrative Officer released a report on the success of the “My Green Office” program, an initiative led by the House's Green the Capitol Office in which individual Member and Committee offices begin learning how to go "green." Speaker Pelosi launched the "My Green Office" program on Earth Day in April 2009. Since its launch, the “My Green Office” program has become a national effort to help Members green not only their D.C. offices, but also their district offices, which number 900 nationwide. “I’m pleased with the progress that members have made to green their offices. It’s critical for us to lead by example and show the American people that reducing our carbon footprint saves both energy and money,” Speaker Pelosi said.

3000 House Employees

The Chief Administrative Officer of the House, Dan Beard, recently delivered a progress report on the initiative to the Speaker entitled “Enabling a Green Workforce: Building a Culture of Sustainability in the House,” which highlights the effort’s significant accomplishments.

The report, found here, explains that the “office greening program” has reached nearly 3,000 House staff on Capitol Hill and hundreds more at District Offices throughout the country. The program has not only saved money, but also a significant amount of energy. Some 75,000 pounds of waste has been diverted from landfills, nearly 400,000 pounds of carbon emissions have been cut and more than 175,000 kilo watt hours of electricity has been saved.

“We’re thrilled that so many Members have agreed to be a part of our efforts to save energy,” Chief Administrative Officer Dan Beard said. “With this program, Members are being good stewards, not only of the environment, but of taxpayer dollars.”

As part of the greening programs, Members of Congress and their staffs agree to make a series of operational changes, such as using recycled paper, switching to Compact Fluorescent Light bulbs, converting to e-faxing, consolidating their servers, installing water filtration systems and optimizing their constituent mailing lists. The office greening focus follows two years of large-scale operational improvements to the House side of the Capitol Complex, the results of which will be released in the first quarter of 2010 in a joint report issued by the CAO and the Architect of the Capitol (AOC).

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Water Conservation

Water Conservation

We have projects underway to reduce water consumption by an estimated 32%. We are replacing inefficient toilets and faucets with low-flow models, and exploring options for substantially reducing irrigation water use.

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