GreenYour Dorm room
Store your stuff instead of shipping it
Sending your cushy dorm furnishings home every summer to sit in the basement of your parents' house until next September can be costly and stressful. Shipping also stresses the environment, being a primary contributor to atmospheric greenhouse gases. Instead, consider locally storing some of the things you know you won't need till school starts again (like textbooks, notes, and the beer pong table).
How to store your stuff instead of shipping it
Look for storage companies that are local, easy to get to, and offer good rates. Google your college name and "storage": you'll end up with a list of companies which service your school community. The list will be long and the choices plentiful if you live in a city or town with a large student population, take Boston, for example. Companies that store items for college students usually cater to the varying needs and attitudes of the age group. Many companies include labor in their service, so you don't have to strain your own spine.
If you do decide to ship things, pack 'em light; it will require less gas to transport them. If you can figure out a way to lighten your load, kudos to you!
Find it! Storage and shipping companies that cater to students
Collegeboxes delivers the boxes and tape to your campus, and then returns a few days later when everything's packed up. They'll store it away in their state-of-the-art, secure facility for as long as you like, and then bring it back to you when you return to campus. Collegeboxes has available appliances for rent as well as shipping services, if you ever deem them necessary. Select your school when you enter their site. Not all services are available for all schools.
This company provides storage and shipping for summer- and semester-long periods. For now, however, it only services a handful of colleges and universities (concentrated mostly in the northeast) including Colgate, Georgetown, George Washington, Hamilton College, Ithaca, NC Chapel Hill, SUNY Albany, Seton Hall, and Syracuse. The company provides supplies, which they drop off at your door and later pick up when the boxes are packed and ready for storage.
Storing your stuff helps you go green because...
- It reduces CO2 and other polluting emissions due to shipping.
The emissions that are produced by shipping cargo depend on three factors: The distance that you're shipping something, the weight of what you're shipping, and the method by which you are shipping. Storing heavy items such as furniture and books that you won't need over the summer will save you a hassle and keep extra carbon out of the atmosphere. Many of the companies listed above cater directly to college students, making it as convenient and safe as possible to store items over a semester- or summer-long period.
- Energy Exec - StorageMart Self Storage’s Green Building Competition
- Care2 - Green Moving Guide
- TreeHugger - Shipping vs. Airfreight Revisited
- REI - Climate Change and Energy: REI's Greenhouse Gas Inventory - Transportation
- Ezine Articles - Self-Storage: The Benefits
- The Daily Green - The Consumer's Guide to the Green Revolution: Pollution From Shipping Is Double That Of Flying