Plymouth Goes Green
The impact of our daily living upon the environment has increased concern over the last twenty years. There have been almost daily updates of research, statistics and policies focusing on environmental damage and the measures needed for change. Environmental problems are global issues. People living in poverty are most at risk from environment-related effects and conflicts, with direct outcomes impacting health and livelihoods. It has been estimated that by the turn of the century, 185 million people in sub-Saharan Africa alone could die from diseases directly related to climate change. Initiatives such as recycling, the introduction of reusable energy sources and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions are already underway in the UK, encouraging environmental change and sustainability.
A recent survey found Plymouth achieving the 4th greenest rating in the UK, with cities being tested in terms of their environmental policies. Plymouth University has also stepped on the environment bandwagon, scoring top of the ‘People and Planet Green League’ in 2010. They were further awarded “Continuous Improvement – Institutional change” at the Green Gown awards 2011, recognising exceptional sustainability initiatives in Universities across the UK.
Such initiatives of Plymouth University’s ‘Green Agenda’ include the introduction of double sided printing, supporting Fairtrade and local farm produce, and reducing waste production, CO2 omissions and water consumption.
Environmentally-friendly measures suggested for individuals can often be costly, and difficult for students to carry out. Here are a few suggestions which could help you to save both the environment and your money:
1) Switch it off! – TVs, laptops, phone chargers and lights; why leave them on red when they’re not being used? By switching off you will save both the environment and your electricity bill.
2) Buy individual – buying individual rather than pre-packaged fruit and veg decreases waste material and can often be cheaper.
3) Reuse bags – bringing your own bags for the food shop not only decreases plastic waste but most supermarkets offer extra loyalty points as an incentive.
4) Print double sided –double sided printing is now accepted for most coursework submissions. Using this initiative at home too will cut paper costs in half and offers the added bonus of less notes to carry around!
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