News From Terre Haute, Indiana

April 12, 2010

SOCIAL SECURITY: Here's to a green planet in retirement

Brian Hewitt
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Social Security has been practicing environmental stewardship since long before “going green” was a fashionable catch-phrase. Here’s just one example:

When it became necessary to renovate one of the largest buildings at the Social Security headquarters complex, we used sustainable design practices. The result was an environmentally sensitive facility where more than 75 percent of the construction materials were salvaged, and energy use was reduced by 13 percent.

This is just one of several buildings to which Social Security has given the green makeover. Other environment-friendly buildings are in Chicago, Philadelphia, Birmingham, Ala., Richmond, Calif., and Jamaica, N.Y.

There are things you can do to go green, too. For example, you could plant a tree and recycle your plastic, glass and paper. But what’s even better than recycling your paper is not having any paper to begin with.

Going green is yet another of the many reasons to complete your business transactions with Social Security online. You can complete all of your “paperwork” without using any paper.

Whether you want to get an estimate of your future retirement benefits, apply for retirement benefits, apply for Medicare, request a replacement Medicare card, report a change of address or direct deposit if you are currently receiving benefits or take charge of your retirement planning, you can do it on our Web site.

There’s no need to drive to your local Social Security office. Don’t wait in traffic when you can do Social Security business from the comfort of your home or office. Save a trip (and the gas and carbon emissions that go along with it) and go to www.socialsecurity.gov/onlineservices to get started.

Doing business with Social Security online is fast, easy and secure. It’s also environmentally the cleanest, greenest way to do your Social Security business. Many of our online services are available as automated phone services as well. Just call 1-800-772-1213 to take advantage of them.

Not everyone can give their home or office an environmental makeover. But anyone can use our online services or automated phone services. For more information, visit www.socialsecurity.gov or call us at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778).