Sustainable Spaces Spotlight: Lifelong Learning
Written by Marina Van Driel
The Lifelong Learning office, located at SFU Vancouver’s Harbour Centre campus, has recently certified their departmental office as a Gold sustainable space, and has modelled exemplary behaviour change, especially being an office of 60+ people. This accomplishment has been great way to encourage staff collaboration on sustainability and has begun to create a more robust, engaged workplace.
In addition to completing the Sustainable Office checklist, they have implemented some extra items that were uniquely useful to those who occupy that space. This includes purchasing departmental sets of reusable containers, labelling them with dishwasher-safe stickers, promoting tumblers for hot beverages, and hanging reusable bags in the kitchen that staff can use as they need to avoid using plastic wherever they can. This is a great example of how to adopt the Sustainable Spaces rubric, and explore sustainability opportunities that are specific and beneficial to your unique office, lab, event, or dining service (residences coming soon!).
Spearheaded by Lifelong Learning’s self-established Sustainability Ambassadors Committee, this office has also researched the best products to use, made their own vinegar and water cleaning solution, installed low flow faucets, and created pun-filled reminders that show that Lifelong Learning has embedded sustainability into every aspect of their department’s space. Not only does this improve their day to day operation, their initiative and drive are helping to support the university in achieving its targets set out in SFU’s 20-year sustainability vision and goals.
What is the Sustainable Spaces Program?
Delivered by the Sustainability Office, Sustainable Spaces is an SFU certification program that strives to incorporate a holistic view of sustainability including ecological, social and economic perspectives to improve sustainability performance at events, in offices, labs and in dining spaces. Participation is voluntary, free, and there are three certification levels in each area (Gold, Silver, and Bronze). The Sustainability Office will help to promote the certified space or event, and provide tools that stakeholders can use to continue their efforts and effectively communicate their successes. Get started with certifying your space on our website today!