Sustainability Initiatives at the PTFL

NUS Green Impact Oxford Environment

Here at the PTFL, we try to do a lot to make our environmental impact as low as possible. On this page, you can find out about what we are currently doing and how we hope to further improve in the future. If you have any suggestions of other initiatives, just send an email to


Keep CupLike the rest of the Bodleian Libraries, the PTFL sells KeepCups to all readers. These reusable cups only cost £6.00 each and can be purchased from the main enquiry desk. Reusable cups are beneficial for the environment because they reduce plastic waste from disposable cups that are needlessly thrown into landfill every year. If everyone used reusable cups, the number of disposable cups transported around the country would also naturally decrease and this would further help the environment by reducing carbon emissions.

Movement Sensors for Lights:

The majority of the lights in our reading rooms are controlled by movement sensors. If nobody is using a particular part of the library for a few minutes, the lights will automatically turn off until a reader enters the room again. These sensors therefore help to save the building electricity and hence lower carbon emissions.

Automatic Sleep Mode for Library Computers:

Both the SOLO computers displaying the library catalogue and the computers in the Reader Workroom automatically go to sleep mode if nobody is using them. This means that we save electricity and carbon emissions.

Recycling Initiatives:Recycling bin

As a matter of course, we always try to recycle as much as possible. When we receive new books, we recycle the vast majority of the packaging and save the boxes for future use. If we no longer need specific pieces of furniture, we offer them to other departments. Likewise, we make sure that any spare paper is cut up and made available to the readers for use as scrap paper. Finally, we have also placed recycling bins throughout the library so that all readers can quickly and easily recycle. These bins are clearly marked and can be found in both the Ground and First Floor Reading Rooms.

 Advocacy Campaigns: 

We are currently running two advocacy campaigns highlighting sustainable travel within Oxford and the city’s biodiversity. More information about these campaigns can be found on these webpages, but we will also tweet about them in the upcoming weeks so make sure you follow us!

Radiator Control:Radiator

Throughout the winter, we make sure that we keep all radiator thermostats at a constant temperature to avoid overheating certain areas of the building. By doing this, we help to save electricity and therefore carbon emissions.

Electronic Publication:

Where possible, the library tries to reduce its environmental footprint by avoiding printing unnecessary documentation. Instead, we try to publish as much as possible in electronic format on the website, or communicate directly with readers through social media.

Environmentally Friendly Printing:

When we do need to print documentation, we try to ensure that it is done in the most eco-friendly way possible. We therefore endeavour to print everything double-sided and avoid laminating posters unless it is absolutely necessary to do so. This initiative helps to save paper and energy as less is printed.


Sustainability Initiatives at the PTFL

How You Can Help

Sustainable Travel in Oxford

Making the Most of Oxford's Biodiversity 

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