Green Impact brings together staff and students to take action on sustainability across campuses and communities, from things as simple as switching to double sided photocopying, to setting up full scale ethical credit unions and social enterprises.
Of course, all of our participants are recognised with our gold, silver and bronze awards, but our annual special awards showcase the most exceptional examples of what our movement does for sustainability in our universities and colleges.
There’s so much incredible stuff going on across the UK, and we wish we could recognise every single action taken by every single participant. But we’re sure you’ll agree that our award winners this year are truly exceptional.
Innovation for Engagement
Net Impact Edinburgh Society – University of Edinburgh
The Edinburgh Sustainably Jam brought together students from different disciplines to solve sustainable development problems through a 48 hour hackathon.
It demonstrated the creativity and talent of the team of student organisers behind it, and employed an innovative educational model that was both academic and practical in nature.
Environmental Improvement (sponsored by CIBSE)
Vicky Simpson – SURF – University of Salford
Vicky Simpson, team lead at the Sustainable Urban and Regional Futures (SURF), created an environmental improvement within their catering choices.
The team have opted to go green by requesting vegan food for all external catering for conferences, workshops and meetings, under ordering for all events by 20 per cent, and provide compostable take away boxes and sandwich bags to allow visitors to take food home and therefore reduce waste.
IEGPD Cledwyn – University of Aberystwyth
As Aberystwyth is a seaside town, the Green Impact team went and joined in with local fortnightly beach cleans.
In their first session, the weather was atrocious with showers and strong winds yet despite this the volunteers were able to collect fifty two kilos of rubbish and plastic pollution in just over an hour.
An additional positive spin off from this is that all the plastic bottles removed from this beach and others will be donated to an upcoming art installation at a local art gallery.
Clare Adams - Rosalind Franklin Superlab - NTU
This year, Clare has been a new member of the team, taking the lab to win a silver award as well as taking on much more to progress the sustainability of the department.
Taking part in the RSPB big garden watch, setting up a team Fairtrade bake sale, and winning the Clifton round of the universities, and now Clare has also put forward proposals for the Rosalind Franklin building to have a green roof.
Shona Brown - Residential Services – University of Leeds
Shona became the student green rep for Oxley halls of residence in autumn 2014, and has also been appointed as a Green Impact project assistant, and a Sustainability Student Architect at the university.
She has organised the planting of crocus bulbs, coordinated the collection of food items for Holbeck Elderly Aid, planned and implemented a food composting scheme on site, introduced a plastic bag recycling scheme and planned and introduced a 'vertical garden' on the site, with plants contained in recycled plastic bottles, irrigated by a rainwater collection system.
Student Leadership (sponsored by IEMA)
Jack Pickering – University of Cardiff
As an intern in the Sustainable Places Research Institute, worked with a fellow student from the School of Architecture to produce an alternative campus map that re-imagined what the university campus might look like if sustainability were located at its core.
Following his placement, Jack has presented this work at university-wide engagement events, leading Jack to contribute to a funding-bid for campus growing space, put together by the students’ union.
In autumn 2015 he will begin a PhD at Cardiff School of Geography and Planning that will explore sustainable food consumption. His team cannot recommend Jack highly enough for his enthusiasm and critical thinking in the field of sustainability
UPP Birks Grange – University of Exeter
Following their successful food waste collection trial in their first year of Excellence in 2013-14, the UPP team have fully rolled out food waste collections from all communal UPP kitchens on Campus (home to over 2000 students).
Over 2 tonnes of food waste was collected in the two months following the roll out in September 2014, massively reducing the amount of waste tipped as landfill.
The work that the UPP team have achieved has also encouraged and inspired the University to collect food waste from catered residences and catering outlets on campus, with the hop of expanding this to include University-owned self-catered residences in coming months.
Congratulations to all of you taking action on sustainability though Green Impact. Why not get involved this year?