With 2019 being the year of the climate emergency, and more focus than ever before on reducing carbon footprints and plastic waste, how can students get involved? Now that you live in student halls or private accommodation, you’ve probably realized just how much waste you generate each week, including plastic, tins and food. But plastic waste is the biggest problem, especially when only specific types of plastic packaging can be recycled and collected. So how can students cut down on plastic waste altogether, and do something good for the environment?

How can students cut down on plastic waste?

To cut down on plastic waste, you could consider:

  • Completely avoiding single use plastics- straws, plastic drink bottles, clingfilm and plastic cutlery are some of the biggest plastic problems, as these are bought only to be used once, and then thrown away. By using longer lasting solutions, like buying a reusable drinks cup and straw, you could drastically reduce your weekly plastic waste.
  • Avoid glitter- glitter and foam parties might have traditionally been a staple for any student party-goer, but with new knowledge, comes new responsibilities. Glitter is made from plastic of such a small size that it can even end up in the food chain, when eaten by plankton or shellfish. Instead,  choose from one of the many ranges of eco-friendly, biodegradable glitter out there.
  • Recycle all plastics- find out what you need to do to recycle as many different types of plastic as possible. Whether its washing out cartoons or removing staples, a few simple steps can help to ensure that almost 100% of your plastic is recycled, rather than thrown away.
  • Visit the Zero Waste Area.

What is the Zero Waste Area?

As part of the Union Shop at UCLan, a Zero Waste Area has been created. This is a plastic-free shop, selling wholefoods and other products completely plastic free! Click here to find out more!