Here at City South, we’re very proud of how green our campus is. We’re very lucky to be surrounded by beautiful greenery all year round! We do our best to keep it green here by providing recycle bins and offering sustainable alternatives. So on World Environment Day, we thought we’d compile a list of ways you can be more sustainable on campus.
1. Take advantage of our water fountains
Water consumption is a huge issue when it comes to being sustainable, especially when there’s so many single use bottles of water available at every turn. However, did you know that bottled water is 500 times as expensive as tap?! Learn to love tap water by bringing in a re-usable bottle and taking advantage of our water fountains that are spread across the campus. It’ll save you lots more money and you’ll be doing your bit for the environment! You can find fountains outside of Starbucks, Costa, the Sports Hall and scattered in our open learning spaces.
2. Cycle or take public transport
With our campus being in such a lovely area of town, why not take the leap and cycle into university, or placement? Cycling is a great way to burn calories and wakes you up in the morning. There are plenty of cheap bicycle shops in the Edgbaston area such as Evans Cycles, On Your Bike and Kwikfold. Find out more about cycling in Birmingham here. Alternatively, Birmingham is one of the most well connected cities in the Europe, so give up the stress and money of having a car at university and take the bus or train instead. To get to our campus, you can get the train to Five Ways station, from there the university is just a 15 minute walk away, or you can the 23/24 bus that will drop you right outside!
3. Buy re-usable
Disposable items such as plastic cutlery, bottles and rubbish account for a huge amount of waste. We understand that being a student, sometimes the temptation to use these items is all too much, especially when they can be cheap! However you can save much more money over time by buying re-usable! Re-usable water bottle, coffee cups, glass Tupperware and bringing in cutlery from home. It will do wonders for your carbon footprint!
4. Obvious one but... recycle!
We have so many recycling bins dotted around campus it would just be plain lazy not to! We have a mixture of plastic, paper, tin and food waste recycling bins to put to use. If ever you’re not near one of these, put your little bit in your bag until you can access one – the best way to keep our campus looking beautiful is by not littering.
5. Reduce your electric footprint
Anything you can do to reduce your energy usage will definitely impact your carbon footprint. Energy saving tips such as turning your lights and heating off when you’re not using them, only boiling as much water as you need in the kettle, turning off switches for laptops when you’re not using them will definitely make you a greener student!
6. Don't get sucked in by student offers
Controversial we know, but try not to take things just for the sake of it. We understand that one of the best things about being a student is all of the free stuff that gets handed to you. However, taking things that you know you’ll only end up throwing out is just creating more waste for the environment.
7. Go digital - use your phone or laptop instead of notebooks
When possible, reduce your paper usage by making notes on a computer or your phone when in lectures! Just remember to back everything up regularly. We also encourage our students and staff to only print something if it’s absolutely necessary. The less notebooks and paper we waste, the more we can help our environment.
8. Buy second hand on campus.
Fast fashion is one of the largest contributors towards land-fill each year. Keep up to date with our Student Union, or follow us on social media to find out when our next clothing outlets will be hosted! We often have second-hand clothing sales somewhere on one of our campuses, which means you can do your bit and recycle. Or get in touch with the SU to see what you can do about hosting your own!
9. Eat less meat
The meat industry is one of the biggest sources of greenhouse gases, which can harm other humans (as well as animals, obviously). The recommended ‘Planetary Health Diet’ does not say everyone has to be vegan, but rich countries like Britain do have to cut down a lot. Fortunately, here at BCU there are lots of Vegetarian and Vegan options available at all of our outlets, with our canteen consistently getting involved in Veganuary and offering veggie options daily.
10. Join a union or environmental group
Individual efforts are not enough on their own – we need organised effort to take on the fossil fuel advocates. Join the Student Union’s Eco Society and see how you can make a difference on campus, or alternatively if you have the means to do so, support an environmental organisation of your choice. Once you leave university, you can join a Trade Union that will have an environmental representative.
Want to find out about our other societies?
Societies go way beyond our Eco Society - there's societies for sport, creativity, faith, performance, volunteering, food and so much more!