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Bookstore Goes Greener With New Shopping Bag Policy

Published on August 20, 2012

Susquehanna University’s Campus Bookstore will do its part this year to help bookstore operator Follett Higher Education Group reduce the amount of plastic bags entering landfills and waterways by 3.5 million bags. Accordingly, starting this fall, bookstore purchases will be bagged only upon request.

“Many of our students actively seek opportunities to reduce their environmental impact, and this simple step can contribute greatly to individual and campus sustainability goals,” said Kevin McCarty, bookstore manager. “To ensure we continue to meet all our customer needs, the Campus Bookstore will always have bags available, but we are confident a majority of our customers will support this sustainability effort.”

Bags, both plastic and paper, are not inherently biodegradable and, according to most experts, can take up to 1,000 years to break down. With more than 930 stores across the United States and Canada, Follett recognized that even the smallest policy change could have a significant impact. Patrons can support these efforts by foregoing shopping bags and choosing to use backpacks, purses or reusable bags when shopping at the university’s Campus Bookstore.

Follett also maintains the largest inventory of used textbooks in the industry and further limits the need for producing print textbooks with year-round buy-back services, as well as robust rental and digital textbook assortments. The company continues to identify additional opportunities to improve its sustainability practices, including the installation of T5 fluorescent lighting in stores to deliver significant energy savings, and the use of recycling programs for shipping materials and disposal of electronics. Follett is also the major benefactor of the Thirst Project, a nonprofit organization focused on providing clean drinking water in areas without access.

The Campus Bookstore is the official on-campus bookstore of Susquehanna University, offering products and services to students, faculty and the surrounding community both in-store and online via www.efollett.com. The bookstore is located in the Charles B. Degenstein Campus Center and is open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.


Karen M. Jones




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