Green Living:

It’s that time of year again. Whether we’re moving out for good, taking off for the summer, or sticking around, we’re all going through our stuff and deciding which things we either need to or want to part with. Furniture, clothes, dishes, sports equipment, books, and old magazines will be looking for new homes in the next few weeks. It is up to us to decide where that new home will be. . . and to try to keep as much out of the trash as possible.

All too often, perfectly good items end up in the trash. Re-using keeps these items out of the landfill and helps others. It also extends the life of the things, thus better using the natural resources that went into making them.

On Friday, April 7, the Graduate Green Living Program representatives held a campus waste audit. They sifted through a sample that included bags of trash from the HBS dorms, Law School dorms, Soldiers Field Park, One Western Avenue, and Peabody Terrace. Unfortunately, at Soldiers Field Park and One Western Avenue almost 20% of the sample was reusable items. A few trash bags were filled entirely with reusable items, and one representative even found a golf club!

As the old saying goes, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” Just because you’re so sick of something that you cannot bear to look at it another second, doesn’t mean that others won’t think it’s just what they’ve been looking for. Instead of tossing it in the circular file, use one of the options above to allow someone else to benefit. And if it really IS trash (old cases, pictures of your ex), please remember to RECYCLE!

Here at HBS, you have a few options for getting rid of reusable items.

Take them to the Surplus Distribution Center at 175 North Harvard Street. Send an email to in advance and leave the items at the gate. Anytime, but Thursdays until 2pm preferred.

Donate to ‘Goodwill’, located at 520 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge MA. Phone number: (617) 868-6330

Post the items you are giving away or selling on HBS Classifieds on //

Sell them on Craigslist. If you’ve never posted items before, it is very easy to do. There is also a section where you can post free stuff you’re giving away: // click on free.

Post items at

DORM RESIDENTS ONLY: There are collection boxes in the lounges (Gallatin, there’s a box on the first floor of entry D). If you have items that are too large to fit in the boxes, just leave it in your room and attach a paper to it that says “donation” or “free” and it will get donated after you move out.

May 1, 2006
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