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7 Simple Steps to Being a Sustainable Student

26 September 2022

6 mins

Whether you are a fresher starting a new chapter, or a student coming back to Loughborough, deciding how you live your life is crucial. It is not yet clear what our sustainable future will look like, but with emerging technologies and the movement to cleaner fuel sources, many people now look to a post fossil fuel world – including businesses. So why is it important for you and how can you get involved?

In short, sustainability looks to protect our natural environment, human and ecological health, while driving innovation and not compromising our way of life. Sustainability skills and environmental awareness is becoming a priority in many corporate jobs as businesses seek to adhere to new legislation and reduce their environmental impacts.

To help you settle in and support the sustainable Loughborough community, we have created 7 Steps to being sustainable at Loughborough.  These 7 quick, easy, and everyday steps, and the further information they link to, will help you and us manage our everyday climate and environmental impact.

STEP 1: Stay in the Loop

This one is super easy and will help you stay up to date on everything we are doing on campus.

STEP 2: Reduce, Reuse, Donate, Recycle

The University works tirelessly with both staff and students to reduce what we bring onto campus and how we dispose of what we have. We have several different campaigns and plenty of information available to help our staff and Students make informed choices whilst here on campus and out in the community.

  1. Carry a re-usable – Support the Ditch the Disposables campaign by carrying a reusable cup, water bottle, and even lunch box.
  2. Donate – Your unwanted clothes in the British Heart Foundation Banks across campus, most halls have one so there are plenty of opportunity to give back. Support the Give ‘n’ Go campaign in halls during move-out period, or the Choose to Reuse campaign for those who live in town.
  3. Know your bins – The university works hard, with both staff and students, to manage our waste, seeking opportunities to reduce waste, maximise reuse, increase recycling, and divert waste from landfill at every opportunity.  To help you dispose of waste and recycling correctly, we have plenty of signage around the campus and in halls as part of our ‘waste… let’s get it sorted’ campaign which encourages ‘right stuff, right bin…’ as this helps reduce contamination and improves recycling rates.  We also have our A-Z of recycling which provides further guidance on specific waste items, and if you need further advice you can contact us through
The Loughborough Cup

STEP 3: Reduce your Energy

We all know saving energy is pretty straight forward, if it’s off its not using energy – simple! So here are a few simple things you can do in halls to do your bit to reduce your hall’s carbon footprint. 

  1. Don’t Standby… It’s Better OFF to Switch off before you leave your room, help us reduce our energy use as we strive to make the campus achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050.
  2. Dress suitably. If it’s a little cooler than you like, close windows and pop a jumper on before you hit the heating dial! (and the reverse if it’s too hot!)
  3. If you’re in halls, ask your Campus and Sustainability rep if you can host an energy black-out to earn points for your hall in the Student Green League!

STEP 4: Choose How You Move

The University is committed to creating a healthy, sustainable environment that is accessible for everyone. We aim to make travelling to, from and around campus better for everyone and ease pressure on the environment at the same time. The potential implications for congestion and air pollution from traffic are significant.

  • Try walking – we have a lovely green campus
  • Try Cycling – it’s the easiest way to get around campus and not only does it help reduce our carbon impact, but it helps you keep fit and healthy and there are plenty of bike racks.
  • Try Public Transport – the campus shuttle is free whilst on site and, for a small fee, a good way to get in and out of town

STEP 5: Shop Sustainably

Consumerism drives a lot of the environmental issues we face today, making some small changes can have a big impact.

  1. Shop at the Green Pea – the Students Union pop up sustainability shop promoting sustainable products and reuse
  2. Find local businesses and community initiatives that help promote a circular economy.
  3. Consider the materials used in clothes you buy. Fast fashion is a huge polluter.
  4. Take your bag for life when you hit the shops.
Zero Waste Shop

STEP 6: Try a student society

LSU have loads of societies for you to get involved in. Check out our top 3 Sustainable societies:

  1. Landscape and Gardening Society – You will learn planting skills from master gardeners and most importantly spend time socialising with open/like minded students every Friday afternoon!
  2. Veg Society – Aims to provide a safe space for people to chat, relax, and have fun. Welfare of the environment and animals around the world, as well as the happiness of the vegetarians and vegans at Loughborough University.
  3. Loughborough Greens – A space for students who empathise with the current climate catastrophes, seek climate justice and are eager to prevent further loss of biodiversity and ecological destruction.

STEP 7: Get involved

There are plenty of ways to get involved in an activity that benefits the environment around you, there are several opportunities and ways to do this…

  1. Come to one of our events –– which we will promote via our social media
  2. Support your Hall Campus and Sustainability rep’s activities if living in halls and get involved in the Student Green League!
  3. Sign up as a Sustainability Ambassador – email to find out more
  4. Volunteer with Action within the local community
Student Volunteers for Hedgehog Friendly Campus Litter Pick

The 7 steps above helps support the University’s Environmental Policy

This article is in support of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 11: Sustainable Cities & Communities. To read more click here.

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