Loughborough University Turns Green into Gold

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It is not fresh news that our lifestyle choices, however small, have a direct impact on the world around us. With current global stories on climate change continually making headline news and experts telling us with ever more confidence that we are responsible for global warming, it would be hard to miss the message they are trying to give us about our obligation to the environment. And yet, as the busy schedule of a student beckons, the thoughts of sustainability that have become so engrained within us, are easily forgotten. If only we could find a lecture hall big enough to fit the whole of Loughborough University in and talk through what prevents us from mitigating our environmental impact.

Well I can’t provide you with an earth sized lecture hall, but I can tell you of ways to get involved and start making a difference.

Whilst Loughborough is considered to be the greenest University in Britain aesthetically, it is also powering its way to a greener future environmentally. For instance, you may or may not have heard of the phrase ‘Can you turn GREEN into GOLD’ kicking about campus. Well, this may not be as figurative as you think. Loughborough University is involved in the Green Impact scheme, which does exactly that. Teams, made up of University staff and students alike, join forces to complete actions aimed to make the workplace green and work against each other to achieve the coveted Gold Award –available only to the team with the highest scores. Not only does this raise awareness of pro-environmental behaviour, but it is also rewarding and (as is always the case) looks great on a CV. Students are given the opportunity to join a team or alternatively can apply to become an Environmental Auditor, providing help with the assessment process.

Of course, there are smaller things you can do in order to make your mark. Rather than using a car there is the free Sprint shuttle bus which runs (or should run) every ten minutes, as well as buses to the train station for a reasonable fare. The University has also provided bike facilities dotted around campus in order to help limit the impact of carbon emissions, whilst a recycling bin is never too far away.

So, though most of this article is not fresh news to you as environmental warnings have been persistently given throughout our lives, there is no justification for inaction. Whilst we feel profoundly entitled to take what we need from the world, it would not hurt to give something back. Even if it is just a plastic bottle thrown into a recycling bin…

For more information or to get involved, visit: http://www.lboro.ac.uk/sustainability/awareness/impact/

Holly Duerden

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