As a Students' Union we recognise that all of our activities, services and products have an impact on our environment. As part of our commitment to sustainability, we believe that managing the environmental and ethical implications of our activities should be an integral part of good management practice and responsible corporate governance.
What are we doing?
Plastic straws are banned from Rubix. This is to help reduce single use plastic, especially as straws can cause a lot of damage to marine life. Straws suck!
VK bottles are currently plastic instead of glass for safety reasons. The SU are working with Global Brands (who supply VK) to be more sustainble. This includes the possibility of trialing VK cans in the future.
Instead of cutting down and buying a real christmas tree, this year we also created a sustainable VK christmas tree with used VK bottles from our club nights!
Eco friendly wristbands for freshers weeks
For Freshers Week 2019 we moved towards more eco-freindly wristbands by using fabric made from the recycled polyester material rPET
The Food Co-operative
In the 2019 AMM, a motion was passed for the SU to create a Food Co-op! We are currently in the process of setting this up with a team of student volunteers to be an integral part of the Thursday Market.
2019/20 Priority Campaign
University of Surrey Students were given the chance to choose the priority campaign for 19/20- their choice was Sustainability to be at the forefront of the SU!
Free water bottles and coffee cups
The SU has given out free reusable water bottles and coffee cups at multiple times throughout the year to decrease the usage of non-reusable cups.
Youngs Kitchen, Thursday market, Pizzaman
Youngs, Pizzaman and Vendors at the Thursday Market are in the process of switching to more eco-friendly packaging and utensils for their takeaways!
Teas & Tees (Union Shop)
Teas and Tees now offers cheaper hot drinks for those who use reusable cups as an incentive to ditch non-reusable cups! They also use Vegeware cups which are compostable. We also use a local bakery to supply the store with fresh pastries.
11 water stations
The SU lobbied the University to provide 11 new water stations on campus, in a bid to encourage the use of reusable water bottles and reducing the amount of shop bought single use water bottles. The stations were installed in March 2020.
The Student Sustainability Forum gives any students the opportunity to hear about the University’s progress and plans, share their opinion on sustainability at Surrey, provide feedback on sustainability initiatives and have their questions answered by the University’s management team.
Bird boxes / Bus stops / Hedgehogs
The SU has been working to improve wildlife levels/habitats on campus, hence they have introduced a series of bird boxes! Furthermore, the SU is in talks to establish green spaces on top of the bus stops on campus. The University is now a bronze accredited Hedgehog Friendly Campus due to the hard work of students and staff of the University!
Onece a month your VP Community, Amina, runs sustainability days, where the SU hosts a green event to improve and help with sustainability on campus, including events such as litterpicks, building bird boxes and reusable santiary towel workshops.
- Join in with Sustainability Days
- Come to the Sustainability Forum
- Join People and Planet Society
- Adop positive environmental lifestyle habits, for example, switching off electrical appliances and lights if not in use. Some more tips to living a more sustainable lifestyle include being more considerate with your water usage, reducing and recycling your waste in addition to supporting Fairtrade and sustainable products along with eating more local, seasonal food where possible.
- Take part in Reduce the Juice!
Get involved in Climate Week 2021!
We will be recruiting volunteers to play an active role! If you are interested in organising events, designing posters, meeting like-minded people and having fun, then this is the place for you. To get involved, email Julia Moldoveanu and People & Planet Society at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.
- You will help organise and run Climate Week
- You will gain communication and engagement skills and have the opportunity to network with like-minded people.
- You will be supported by the Sustainability Team and People and Planet Society and have the opportunity to collaborate with other societies.
- You will be able to log your hours on the Surrey Volunteering platform and get a certificate.
Log your hours!
If you have already been involved in our initiatives, you can now log the hours you have been involved in on the Surrey Volunteering platform: