The Students’ Union recognises that protecting our environment is now more important than ever, so we are committed to making sure we are always working as sustainably as possible.
We always work to reduce the amount of waste we produce, from reducing our energy and water usage in Falmer House to replacing salt and pepper sachets with pots and no longer providing plastic straws at our outlets. As well as this, we now provide biodegradable takeaway cutlery, encourage customers to use their own cups for hot drinks, and don’t issue receipts as standard for almost all products we sell.
Our Food Waste Cafe also helps to reduce the amount of food going to landfill by turning produce that would have otherwise been thrown away into amazing cuisine. The Cafe has been a huge success since we started it last year and your Society and Citizenship Officer, Aisling Murray, intends to extend this great project to make it a more permanent part of the work we do.
The Union also aims to reuse products as much as possible. For instance, we have used reclaimed and repurposed furniture for our sports bar, The Clubhouse, and furniture from the demolished Mantell building in Falmer House.
We also run the very popular Free Shop, where we offer second-hand kitchenware, posters and stationery, donated by students, for free. During this year’s Freshers’ Week, hundreds of students used the Free Shop to stock up on essential items and we plan to continue its great work this year.
To reduce carbon emissions made by our staff, we offer 20p per mile cycled to encourage travelling by bike for work trips, rather than by car. We also closely monitor our carbon footprint by collating data on our energy usage, travel by staff and paper usage, and come up with ways to reduce our impact even further.
Students also get involved in the work that we do to protect the environment, with societies like Sussex Roots, campaigns such as Fossil Free Sussex and our Go Green Week - an event held every year where students collaborate on a week of events raising awareness on environmental issues and celebrating sustainability.
That’s why the Students’ Union has been classed as ‘Excellent’ by the National Union of Students’ Green Impact scheme - an accolade that only six other student unions hold. To find out more, visit sussexstudent.com/notforprofit
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