The FAS community has noticed a change in their bathrooms- the addition of dual flush handles to many toilets and super low flow aerators on the sinks. The FAS Green Program and the FAS Office of Physical Resources and Planning have been working over the past year to change about 900 sinks and 675 toilets in FAS bathrooms campus-wide.
The group is working with Harvard’s plumbers and building managers to make changes in bathrooms across campus, including large buildings like the Science Center, William James Hall, and LISE. Smaller buildings have been included- like University Hall, the Registrar’s office, and the Office for the Arts.
Students have also been integral to the process. FAS Green Program interns and REPs spent many hours this year cataloguing possible faucets and toilets to switch. "I now know more about Harvard's bathroom fixtures than I ever expected to" said Zach Arnold '10, who examined over 300 toilets and sinks during the summer.
Due to the success of the program, it was expanded to include all 1.6 gallon per flush toilets in the Yard dorms, which were switched over during J-term. Next up in the plan is the Houses, starting with Leverett Towers.
The green dual flush toilet handles save ½ gallon of water per flush when the user flushes up (1.1 gallons instead of 1.6 gallons). New stickers and signs have been installed to help remind users to flush up. The sinks use 0.5 gallons of water per minute, as opposed to 2.2 or 2.0 gallons per minute previously- resulting in a 75-77% drop in water use.