World Recycle Week 2023
With global consequences of the climate crisis reaching urgency, it is vital we all play our part in practicing sustainable living. That’s why Recycle Now, a national campaign in England and Northern Ireland, hosts an annual Recycle Week event, inspiring the public to better the way in which they recycle.
Although 88% of UK households frequently participate in recycling, 57% inadvertently place recyclable items in the waste bin. Therefore, this year’s campaign (16th – 22nd October), named The Big Recycle Hunt, is helping people identify the most common household items that end up in landfill, such as aerosol bottles, plastic tubs, cleaning bottles and food tins. These items can all be converted into reusable materials, preventing build-up in landfill sites.
With the University ranked number one in the UK in the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2023, we also encourage our community to reflect on ways they can better recycle. In line with our pledge to recycle 45% of waste on campus by 2025, several recycling initiatives are run across teaching, learning and research.
For example, the team running our furniture re-use store, refurbishes and rehomes unwanted furniture from across campus, which is then reused by staff, students, charities and local organisations. As well as having clearly defined waste and recycle bins across campus, we have also implemented the “Bin the Bin” scheme, whereby staff are encouraged to sacrifice their individual bins and instead take their waste to nearby recycling points, helping to maximise the amount of waste recycled.
Our teaching and research laboratories are also committed to instilling good sustainability practices within their daily routines. Our 6R Responsible Plastics Protocol, encourages the responsible and sustainable use and disposal of plastics. Laboratory users are also supported to implement LEAF (Laboratory Efficiency Assessment Framework), a national set of guidelines to aid higher education organisations operate more efficiently and sustainably within their laboratories.
Where waste cannot be recycled, our current disposal strategy ensures 94% is averted from landfill. Instead, all non-recyclable material is transferred to a specialist Material Recovery Facility (MRF), before eventually being used as Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF).
For guidance on how you can get involved with recycling on campus, read this handy ‘Easy eco for all’ booklet created by Harriet Bickley, an FBMH mental health researcher for @mashproject, to help staff & students live, work & study in an eco-friendlier way.
To find out more about Environmental Sustainability: visit the Faculty’s intranet page, website or contact firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on Environmental Sustainability at the University watch this short film or visit their website.