Sustainability Resources

General Resources

Calculate your carbon footprint

Calculate your water footprint

Test your green know-how & learn how to shrink your environmental footprint.

EPA Sustainability - Information on smart growth and sustainable communities; air, climate, and energy; sustainable water; and materials management and safe products.

EPA Learn the Issues: Green Living - Information on sustainable living at home, in the garden, in your community, at work, at school, on the road, and when shopping.

National Geographic: Green Guide - Information on a sustainable home and garden, travel and transportation, food, and green living. The site also includes numerous buying guides.

Keep America Beautiful - The nation's largest volunteer-based community action and education organization, which combines education with hands-on stewardship to make America's communities cleaner, greener, safer, and more livable.

Go Green at Home! For Kids and Adults - An article describing some of the simple actions you can take to be more sustainable at home, benefiting both the environment and your wallet!

Topic-Specific Resources

Air Quality: Learn more about how your health, the environment, and the economy are related to air quality.

Energy: Learn more about energy efficiency and alternative energy sources.

Food: Learn more about how various farming practices impact your health and the environment.

Organic: Organically-grown food is food grown and processed using no synthetic fertilizers or pesticides. No prohibited substances can be applied to the land for at least 3 years before the harvest of an organic crop. Genetically-modified crops are prohibited and producers are required to feed livestock 100 percent organic feed. Organically-raised animals may not be given hormones to promote growth.

Free-range: Free-range applies to poultry and producers must demonstrate to the US Department of Agriculture that the poultry has been allowed access to the outside and are not restricted to a poultry house.

Farms and Nurseries

Green Products: Learn More about green product options and labels.

Post-consumer product: A product made from materials recovered from the solid waste stream and used in place of raw materials. This includes materials collected for recycling.

Refurbished product: A product that has been completely disassembled and restored to its original working order while maximizing the reuse of its original materials.

Environmentally preferable product: Product that has a lesser or reduced effect on human health and the environment when compared with competing products that serve the same purpose.


  • Bring a reusable bag when you go shopping. You can keep it in your car so you always have it with you.
  • Purchase items made from recycled materials.
  • Donate your old items to thrift stores, rather than throwing them away.
  • Buy durable, long-lasting items, rather than disposable items.
  • Buy in bulk. You will dispose of less packaging long-term.


Land Use/Landscaping: Learn More about how proper landscaping and smart development planning can improve our environment.


- Plant native species in your yard and garden. They require less overall maintenance including less watering , fertilizers, and pesticides.

  • Redbud
  • River Birch
  • Sweetbay Magnolia
  • Sweetgum
  • Sycamore
  • Flowering Dogwood
  • Waxmyrtle 
  • Buttonbush
  • St. John’s-wort
  • Highbush blueberry
  • Mountain Laurel
  • American Beautyberry
  • Blackberries
  • Azaleas

- Build a rain garden to encourage water to soak into the ground.


Waste/Recycling: Learn more about trash and the benefits of recycing.


  • Reduce food waste by using up or donating the food you already bought.
  • Reuse items around the house such as rags, empty jars, and gift wrap.
  • Recycle plastics, paper, aluminum, tin, cardboard, etc. that cannot be reused.
  • Buy products made from recycled materials, which encourages manufacturers to make more recycled-content products available.
  • Compost your food scraps and yard wastes.


Water Quality:

Learn More about the importance of water quality on your health, the enviroment, and the ecomony.

Common water pollutants:

  • Excess nutrients
  • Oil and grease
  • Pathogens
  • Sediment


Poem about water quality


Local Resources

Town of Farragut: Stormwater Matters - The Town of Farragut's water quality program. Water quality is an important part of sustainability.

Ijams Nature Center - A 275-acre wildlife sanctuary and environmental learning center, providing community-wide connections and experiences through education, conservation, recreation and responsible environmental stewardship for all people. 

UT Make Orange Green –  Make Orange Green is a comprehensive program that promotes and coordinates environmental stewardship activities at the University of Tennessee. 

Pellissippi State Community College Sustainable Campus Initiative

Local Affiliates of Keep America Beautiful