October 13, 2023, by sustainablenottingham
Tips for living sustainably as a student
Noelle Zrelli is a second year Veterinary Medicine student at UoN. Here she gives us some tips for sustainable living.
Living sustainably as a student is not only important for the environment but also for your own well-being. By making conscious choices in your daily life, you can reduce your environmental impact and contribute to a healthier planet.
Here are some practical ways to be sustainable as a student.
**Ditch the car**
Consider walking, biking, or using public transportation instead of driving to campus. There are loads of options available. If you live off-campus and need a car occasionally, carpooling with classmates can help reduce emissions and save on fuel costs.
**Save on energy**
Turn off lights, unplug electronics when not in use, and use energy-efficient bulbs and appliances. You can also save energy by using natural light during the day and keeping your heating or cooling system in check. When studying, use a laptop instead of a desktop computer, as they generally consume less energy. See more energy saving tips.
**Reduce water usage**
Be mindful of water consumption. Fix leaks, take shorter showers, and turn off the tap when brushing your teeth and washing your hands. You can also collect rainwater for plants.
Plan your meals to reduce food waste. Buy in bulk, store food properly to extend its shelf life, and compost kitchen scraps if you can. Opt for plant-based meals or reduce meat consumption to lower your carbon footprint.
**Choose sustainable products**
When shopping for school supplies or personal items, look for products with eco-friendly certifications. Choose products with minimal packaging and consider second-hand options whenever possible.
Support local and sustainable brands
When purchasing clothing or other products, support local businesses and those with sustainable practices. Ethical fashion and eco-friendly brands are becoming more accessible and affordable. Check out Good on You to see how brands compare.
**Reduce, reuse, recycle**
The classic mantra still holds true:
- Reduce your consumption by buying only what you need, and buying better so things last longer.
- Reuse items like water bottles, bags, and containers instead of opting for single-use alternatives.
- Recycle paper, cardboard, plastics, and glass appropriately to divert waste from landfills. Recycling needs to be clean and dry so it doesn’t contaminate anything else.
Learn and follow your university’s waste sorting guidelines to ensure items are properly recycled or disposed of. Check the UoN A-Z of waste.
Bring your own reusable containers, cutlery, and coffee cups to campus. This can save you money too as the Latte Levy gives a 40p discount on drinks in reusable cups compared to disposable ones.
Reduce plastic waste
Minimize your use of single-use plastics and disposable items as these contribute to pollution. Carry a reusable water bottle, bring your own shopping bags, and avoid products with excessive plastic packaging.
Use digital textbooks and notes whenever possible. If you need to print, use both sides of the paper and consider printing multiple pages per sheet to reduce paper usage.
**Education and advocacy**
Educate yourself and others about sustainability. Engage in conversations, attend workshops, and advocate for sustainable practices within your university community.
**Engage in campus sustainability initiatives**
Many universities have sustainability programs and clubs. Get involved in campus efforts to reduce waste, conserve energy, and promote sustainable practices. At UoN, sign up to Green Rewards to be in with the chance of winning prizes for living sustainably.
Being a sustainable student not only benefits the environment but can also save you money and promote a healthier lifestyle. By incorporating these practices into your daily routines, you can make a positive impact on the planet while setting a great example for others to follow. Sustainability is a journey, and every effort counts toward a greener future.
For many more tips on how to live sustainably whilst a student at UoN, including, fashion, food and banking advice, read the Sustainable Living Guide.
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