The University of London show how small steps = significant change

sustainability team at university of london taking part in zero waste week

Jo, Nic (with real non-disposable mug), Pip and Seetha from the University of London

Wondering how to get your business or organisation on board with Zero Waste Week?

Pip Sadler from the University of London is sharing her guest post with something to inspire you!

Over to Pip…

A couple of years back my employers, the University of London, set up a Sustainability Champions network and sent out a call for volunteers. Through this, people from all over the University have come together to share ideas, get involved, and each try and make a difference to the energy consumption and habits of their offices.

A comment from our Sustainability Manager during one of our meetings especially resonated with me – to remember that changes to just one office could be equivalent to changes to our own homes tens (if not hundreds) of times over. This really struck me when I discovered there are as many lights in our just our work foyer as there are in my whole house!

With that in mind, we recently decided to step our efforts up a gear and approached our directors with a number of proposals. One suggestion was to stop purchasing disposable cups and replace them with mugs. To our amazement, the directors loved the idea. They even did some research into the numbers of cups we were getting through, which turned out to be a staggering 97,000 throwaway cups over the past two years! They’ve agreed to start this in September, which I think is a perfect way to celebrate Zero Waste Week.

Do similar projects at your work exist? If not, are there ways to approach your boss and colleagues to ask if they will consider some of your green ideas; perhaps there’s space for a veg garden, or maybe there are a couple of people in your office that would be happy to go the extra mile to check that their team’s computers, printers and lights are off when they leave for the day? The one thing I’ve learned is that it’s definitely worth asking – you might be surprised at what you can achieve!

Pip has recently started blogging about eco things and wild swimming. You’ll find her on twitter as @pip_squeaking.

The University of London environment blog is run by their Sustainability Manager and their twitter stream is @londonenviro.

Posted in

Rachelle Strauss

1 Comment

  1. […] just small actions, but I’ve started writing to my MP, stepped up my sustainability efforts at work, and just last week went on a protest with tens of thousands of other people who also wanted to […]

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.