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  • Michael Oshman

Green Your Restaurant's Restrooms

Current green restaurant trends show a focus on local food, ditching plastic, and reducing food waste. While these are great avenues on which to concentrate, there are so many other ways that restaurants can become more environmentally sustainable. Did you know your bathroom could be wasting water and energy while generating unnecessary waste? Here are a few ways you can make your restrooms more sustainable.

High Efficiency Hand Dryers

13 billion pounds of paper towels are used each year in the United States. By investing in high efficiency hand dryers, you not only cut down on your trash waste but also on your energy use as well. High efficiency hand dryers can reduce your energy consumption by 75%. The GRA certifies four of World Dryer’s High Efficiency Dryers: VERDEdri, VMax, SMARTdri, SLIMdri, and Airforce. Discover how much your restaurant can save by switching to World Dryer’s high efficiency hand dryers here. Using high efficiency hand dryers can earn your restaurant up to 7.5 GreenPoints™.

Hand Sinks

Placing a low flow aerator on just one restroom hand-sink faucet can save your restaurant $500 dollars per year. Aerators are placed at the tip of a faucet and help reduce water flow. Installing touchless sensor faucets are another way to reduce water usage. A study at California State University, Sacramento found that a touchless sensor faucet with a .35 gallon per minute aerator resulted in a water reduction of 54% in comparison to a manual faucet. Installing low flow aerators and touchless sensor faucets can earn your restaurant up to 4.5 GreenPoints™.

Recycled Products

You can switch out your standard bath tissue and seat covers to products that are 100% recycled and contain high post-consumer recycled material. Post-consumer products are made using materials that have served their intended use, and instead of being discarded, are recycled into a new product. Using bath tissue and seat covers that contain post-consumer waste can earn your restaurant up to 5.5 GreenPoints™.

Toilets and Urinals

There are a variety of ways you can make your toilets and urinals more environmentally sustainable.

  • Ultra-High Efficiency Toilets: The GRA recommends installing toilets that use 1 gallons per flush (gpf) or less. Installing high efficiency toilets can earn your restaurant up to 3 GreenPoints™.

  • Low Flow or Waterless Urinals: We recommend using 1/8 gpf urinals or, even better, waterless urinals. One waterless urinal can save your restaurant an average 20,000-45,000 gallons of water per year. Installing low flow or waterless urinals can earn your restaurant up to 4.25 GreenPoints™.

Non-Toxic Hand Soap

Did you know your hand soaps could contain ingredients that can be toxic to you, your customers, and employees? The GRA recommends purchasing hand soap that meets GRA’s product certification standards or meets Green Seal, EcoLogo, or EPA Safer Choice standards. Purchasing non-toxic hand soap can earn your restaurant up to 7.75 GreenPoints™.

Occupancy Sensors

Bathrooms are an ideal place to install occupancy sensors. Occupancy sensors can reduce your energy use by as much as 68% and can increase your energy savings by almost 60%, according to a study by the EPA. Occupancy sensors can earn your restaurant up to 2.25 GreenPoints™.

If you did all of these steps, you could save at least $1,000 a year and earn up to 39 GreenPoints™, which is over 62% of the way to becoming a Certified Green Restaurant®. To learn more and find other Certified Green Products for your restaurant, visit

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