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Sustainability

 

The Union is committed to increasing sustainability and protecting the environment. We recognise our environmental impact and we are making changes so that we can reduce it.

Our Policies:

As a Student-Led and Democratic organisation, we have a number of Policies in place to allow us to work in a more sustainable direction.
See some of our policies below:

Student Policies
2022

Cafes on campus to offer Healthy Options/ Vegan & Halal options

0% Click here to download
2022

Free reusable water bottles at student fair and SU Desk

50% Click here to download
2021

Invest for Change

50% Click here to download
2020

Tackling Climate Change Framework

50% Click here to download
2020

Societies UN SDGs Requirement

0% Click here to download
2020

Climate Change Policy

50% Click here to download
2020

Opt-in Paper system

0% Click here to download
2019

Environmental Policy

75% Click here to download
2018

Signing up to the SDGs (Global Goals) - Union

100% Click here to download
2018

Signing up to the SDGs (Global Goals) - University

100% Click here to download

 

Useful Documents:

Sustainability at City Study study report (focus groups)

Click here to download

Our biggest environmental impacts in 2020/2021

Click here to download

Our biggest environmental impacts in 2021/2022

Click here to download

SMART Action Plan on Sustainability

Click here to download

Staff Incentives Guidance

Click here to download

Sustainable Food Guide by SOS-UK

Click here to download

 

WHAT WE ARE DOING

'REUSE, REDUCE & RESEARCH' Campaign

We want students to learn more about what the individual could do for a more sustainable future (sustainable lifestyle options), and also what structural change we can achieve together. The campaign aims to encourage students to make more eco-friendly choices and be proactive in creating a more sustainable campus, Union and University. 

Come and join us at our events:

VINTAGE KILO SALE by Vintage Vera

Friday 8th April

10am - 5pm

Pavilion

Paint Your Own Tote Bag Workshop

Monday 11th April

4pm - 5:30pm

SU Common Room

Don't Be a Dummy, Win the Honey! Quiz

Tuesday 12th April

12pm - 2pm

University Walkway

Invest for Change Seminar

Tuesday 12th April

3pm - 4pm

C318 & Online 

Gardening with the Sustainability Team

Thursday 14th April

12:30pm - 2pm

City's Edible Garden

 

Check out our campaign here to get involved!

 

DECOLONISING & DECARBONISING CITY

UCU, SOS-UK and NUS all call for action and have joined up for a campaign in order to convince universities to decarbonise and decolonise.

Why is this issue important?

We all know that colonialism, imperialism and Western high-carbon economic systems all have major impacts on our societies today. Universities were created and built on colonialism, which has shaped and continues to shape our education system. This largely include education about, public discourse on and action for climate change are all victims of modern-day colonialism and white washing, even though there is significant history of environmental, climate and social justice activism led by Black communities, Indigenous peoples and people of colour.

Moreover, the Union acknowledges that climate change is a human justice issue. Although the climate crisis is overwhelmingly by the Global North for ‘the West’, its consequences will affect the poorer nations disproportionately more. Therefore, there is burning need for the wealthy countries to divest from unsustainable companies, especially from fossil fuels and start investing in renewable energy.

What is City doing?

Decolonise City

‘Decolonise City’ is not just a buzzword. It’s an anti-racist campaign aiming to centre Black and minoritized students at the heart of our institution. We aim to bring to light a decolonial perspective, which we believe is essential to anti-racist work and take a systemic approach for a systemic problem. Click here for more information on the campaign.

Invest for Change

Invest for Change is an SOS-UK led campaign which aims to radically reform how universities invest their money, creating a more resilient and sustainable economy through investments. SOS-UK supports students to run campaigns on campus, as well as working directly with universities to lead this shift. The Students' Union has launches its own Invest for Change campaign. Communication has started between Marion O’Hara, Chief Financial Officer and Louis Sugunasabesan, Ethics and Environmental Officer about reviewing City’s investment policy and ensuring that the university divests from unsustainably practicing companies. In addition to this, we also organised a workshop, where Melanie Kee from SOS-UK came to talk about City’s current investments and what we can do to convince the university to invest more sustainably. The aim of the workshop was to provide students with more information and a sense of control over the larger, structural aspects of sustainable change, which emerged clearly as priority among students during the sustainability focus groups. For more information, email Kata at kata.kepes@city.ac.uk.

 

INCENTIVES

As an SU we always try to recognise students involvement in our activites and enjoy providing students with rewards and incentives for getting involved. 


Working remotely and in-person the incentives we give-away can have a big impact on the environment and we want to ensure that our incentives are sustainable and accessible.

We have put together a guide for our staff, officers and student leaders. 

You can see our guide on incentives here.


FAIRTRADE

“Fairtrade is about better prices, decent working conditions, local sustainability, and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers in the developing world.” – (Fairtrade Foundation, 2019)

By buying Fairtrade you are helping farmers in developing countries have a secure and sustainable livelihood in which they have the power to decide on their future. City University committed to being Fairtrade in 2010, and as such you can choose Fairtrade on campus, with various food and drink options and on clothing in the SU Shop and on our e-store. To find out more about Fairtrade click here.

 

GREEN IMPACT STUDENTS' UNION AWARD

Every year as a Union we work towards the Green Impact Students' Union Award run by Students' Organising for Sustainability (SOS-UK). This work is very important to us as an organisation as it allows us to keep up to date with the cleanest and greenest ways of running your Students' Union.

Last year we submitted our audit document in April and are pleased to share that we achieved an “Excellent – +250 Points” (formerly gold), a huge improvement on “Good” (formerly bronze) from 2019/20. This year, we are aiming to achieve Excellent again.

What can you do?

You can get involved in our 'Reuse, Reduce & Research' Campaign by coming along to our events. Also, keep an eye out for any sustainable tips on our Instagram page 'cityunisu'!

Challenge your knowledge with our sustainability quiz (answers are in the bottom of the page). For more information on each question, fill out the actual quiz here.

1. What percentage of total global greenhouse gas emissions are produced by the fashion industry? 

A) Less than 1%

B) 5%

C) 10%

D) 15%

8. In Brazil, smallholders produce 87% of the cassava, 70% of the beans and 50% of the poultry. What percentage of land do they hold? 

A) 25%

B) 80%

C) 50%

2. How many liters of water does it take to make 1 pair of jeans? 

A) 52 liters

B) 476 liters

C) 1,028 liters

D) 3,781 liters

9. According to the Fairtrade Foundation, smallholder farmers produce more than 70% of the world's food supply, yet represent over how many of the world's hungriest people? 

A) 40%

B) 30%

C) 50%

3. The fashion industry contributes to environmental degradation in which of the following ways? 

A) Deforestation

B) Desertification and degradation of soil

C) Loss of biodiversity

D) All of the above

10. Universal plugs fit all sinks, helping you to use only the water you need. Using one could save you up to… 

A) 25 litres a day

B) 30 litres a day

C) 35 litres a day

4. What percentage of clothing is recycled?

A) 50%

B) 33%

C) 10%

D) Less than 1%

11. True or false? Leaving your heating on a lower temperature all day is cheaper than having it on high when you’re home and off when you’re out. 

True

False

5. What does greenwashing in fashion refer to? 

A) Washing clothing in environmentally friendly ways

B) Claims of environmental sustainability by a brand that are false or misleading

C) Using natural fabric dyes

D) Lying to people around you that something you bought was secondhand when it wasn’t

12. Radiators should never be under windows, as all the heat is lost through the window instead of staying in the room. 

True

False

6. Which statistic about garment factory workers is correct? 

A) Fashion is the 2nd biggest contributor to modern slavery

B) Garment factory workers in Bangladesh earn approximately $95 per month, yet the living wage is $443

C) 170 million children are engaged in child labor, much of which is textile and garment production

D) All the above

13. There’s no need to insulate the floor in a house because heat rises. 

True

False

7. What does fairtrade mean?

A) A system of certification that aims to ensure a set of standards are met in the production and supply of a product or ingredient

B) Workers’ rights, safer working conditions and fairer pay for farmers and workers

C) High quality, ethically produced products for shoppers

D) All of the above

14. Electrical appliances can still use electricity when turned off. 

True

False

 

Finally, we have put together a series of ways you can save money by getting more sustainable while you're at home, studying for exams (good luck!):