Rep. Erin Murphy. Representing St. Paul District 64A

Latest Writings

Happy Earth Day

On the 38th anniversary of Earth Day, I thought it would be appropriate to talk about a project underway at the House of Representatives designed to cut down on our waste.

Last summer a Task Force on Paper Waste Reduction was started to set goals for waste reduction within the Capitol and set an example for waste reduction throughout Minnesota.

Here are the goals

- Reduce overall House paper usage by 20% through various strategies of reusing, recycling, and conserving

- Increasing the Duplex Rate to 50%

- Giving paper a "second chance"

- Switch from legal to letter size paper for bills

Audits from the House found that in a 15-month session, the House purchased over 60 tons of paper, or over 12.6 million sheets. Several practical efforts are underway to bring that number down.

- Smaller amendments to bills are being printed on letter-sized paper and further transition is being considered

- Duplicating Center is testing 100% recycled paper, hopefully leading to fully implemented use of 100% recycled paper

- Increased recycling bins on the House Floor, and other areas of the Capitol and State Office Building

We are already seeing gains, but this is a work in progress. We will continue to work toward conservation-minded practices that are both cost-effective and environmentally friendly here at the Capitol.

Enjoy the rest of Earth Day and the budding spring.