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College Environmental Policy

  1. Sample Policy
  2. Appendices

Sample Policy

<insert name of college> recognises the need to function all year round in a manner which minimises its harmful environmental impact. To this end <insert name of college> will:

  1. Maximise the proportion of waste that is recycled & minimise the quantity of non-recyclable refuse. <insert name of college> therefore commits to:
    1. Reduce the absolute amount of waste that it produces from college kitchens, buttery, staff offices and student accommodation.
    2. Make full use of all recycling facilities provided by Cambridge City Council and private suppliers, including glass, cans, white, coloured and brown paper, plastic bottles, batteries, print cartridges, cardboard and furniture.
    3. Compost, or cause to be composted, all organic waste, green waste and un-recycled cardboard produced in or collected from kitchens, gardens, offices and rooms.
    4. Recycle or safely dispose of white goods, computers and electrical appliances.
    5. Use reusable resources and containers and avoid unnecessary packaging where possible.
    6. Always purchase recycled resources where these are both suitable and available.
    7. Provide sufficient, accessible and well-publicised collection points for recyclable waste, with responsibility for recycling clearly allocated.
    8. Make specific arrangements for events, such the May Ball/June Event and 'Bops', where significant recyclable waste is likely to be produced, in order to both minimize the waste produced and maximize what is recycled/reused.
    9. Promote reuse of items and waste recycling among staff, students and conference guests through training, posters and incentives.
  2. Reduce energy consumption, especially of energy derived from fossil fuels, in all college property. <insert name of college> therefore commits to:
    1. Support renewable and carbon-neutral electricity options on any energy-purchasing consortium, with the aim of supplying all college properties with electricity that can be attributed to renewable and carbon-neutral sources.
    2. Appreciate that it is preferable to purchase electricity from a company that invests in new sources of renewable and carbon-neutral electricity.
    3. Look in to the possibility of on-site micro-generation of renewable electricity.
    4. Give preference to the most energy efficient and environmentally sound appliances available, this includes only using energy-saving light bulbs.
    5. Provide energy efficient heating systems, with adjustable controls for individual heating appliances wherever possible, and ensure that comprehensible instructions are available to staff and students on the use of heating controls.
    6. Encourage staff, students and conference guests to save energy through visible reminders, incentives and information to increase awareness. This particularly concerns turning off electrical appliances when not in use in both communal and residential rooms.
    7. Monitor and understand the importance of different sources of college energy consumption, and set appropriate and measurable targets for a reduction in certain areas of consumption and/or in the overall consumption of energy.
  3. Ensure that improvements, purchases and developments are environmentally sound. <insert name of college> therefore commits to:
    1. Seek and act upon professional advice in order to minimize the adverse environmental impact of any new developments and exceed government regulatory requirements. This includes efficient heating and water systems, appropriate space for recycling, and the use of recycled and/or sustainable building materials where possible.
    2. Purchase efficient and environmentally sound appliances in order to fulfill the commitments in section 2, and consider replacing old stock with 'greener', more efficient alternatives.
    3. Purchase food that has been produced and delivered with minimal impact on the environment, this includes buying locally produced, organic and free-range food wherever possible.
    4. Optional [Investigate and understand the environmental impact of college investments. This implies a preference against companies whose 'core activity' contributes to: 1. Global warming through the extraction or production of fossil fuels, 2. the manufacture of chemicals which are dangerous or persistent in the environment, 3. The unsustainable harvest of natural resources.]
  4. Minimise the use of unsustainable transport by its staff and students. Therefore <insert name of college> commits to:
    1. Make available information about bicycle and pedestrian routes, public transport services and car share schemes to staff and students.
    2. Reduce the proportion of travel on College business carried out in private transport and eliminate unnecessary and inefficient use of college vehicles.
  5. Minimise consumption of water. <insert name of college> therefore commits to:
    1. Repair sources of water leakage, such as dripping taps and showers as quickly as possible.
    2. Install appliances which reduce water consumption.
    3. Encourage a decrease in water usage among staff, students and conference guests.
    4. Purchase the most efficient washing machines and dishwashers available which have an economy setting as default.
  6. Minimise the use of chemical pollutants both in college by students and staff, and in college grounds by gardeners. <insert name of college> therefore commits to:
    1. Ensure that all cleaning products used by college staff have a minimal detrimental impact on the environment, i.e. are biodegradable and non-toxic, even where this exceeds the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) regulations.
    2. Minimise the use of fertilisers and pesticides in college grounds, opting for the use of compost produced on site wherever possible.
  7. Ensure that the Environmental Policy is enacted, enforced and reviewed. <insert name of college> therefore commits to:
    1. Establish a College Environmental Committee that will hold responsibility for the enactment, enforcement and review of the Environmental Policy. The Environmental Committee shall be the source of advice and guidance to staff and students on how to implement this Policy.
    2. Ensure that on the Environmental Committee there will be appropriate representatives of the relevant college departments and authorities – such as catering, gardening, maintenance, cleaning and finance.
    3. Ensure that on the Environmental Committee there will be the Green Officer representing the JCR and a representative from the MCR.
    4. Ensure that the Environmental Committee will review the Environmental Policy on an annual basis, and will monitor progress and set measurable targets wherever possible.
    5. Ensure that the Environmental Policy is enforced regardless of whether its requirements exceed the mandate of the law.
    6. Require that every staff and student member recognizes their responsibility to ensure that the commitments in the Environmental Policy are properly put into practice.