A big Hello! from the new Green Behaviour Change Frontrunner

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Hello I’m Shanics, the latest Green Behaviour Change Frontrunner to join the Estates’ sustainability team here at DMU. I’m taking over from Alex so I’ll try my best to fill her shoes and keep the blog posts as exciting and engaging as she has!

I’ll be supporting the social media channels on some of the projects the team work on to encourage students and staff to be mindful of and make sustainable decisions in their every-day lives.

Becoming a Frontrunner is a great way to gain hands on experience in a variety of roles within DMU. I’m currently studying Corporate Social Sustainability and International Business so you’ve probably gathered that I’m interested in all things sustainable but my passion lies in ethical trading. Being a Frontrunner in the Estates’ sustainability team means that I get to learn more about how DMU tackles its sustainability goals. I’m mostly looking forward to engaging with you all and helping out at the annual Fairtrade Fortnight (which hopefully means lots of Fairtrade chocolate!).

We have lots going on around DMU from NUS Student Switch Off to Fairtrade Fortnight. So watch this space and keep an eye on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages for more information on how you too can get involved!

 

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What I’ve Learned During My Time in the Environment and Sustainability Office

What I’ve Learned During My Time in the Environment and Sustainability Office

If you didn’t already know I’m Alex and I’ve been managing the sustainableDMU social media accounts since October and today is my last day!

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time in the office and have learned so much about environment and sustainability. I’ve helped with the promoting of Fairtrade Fortnight 2017 & Earth Week 2017!

More info: Fairtrade Fortnight 2017 Storify Feed & Earth Week 2017 Storify Feed

I got the chance to attend the NUS Student Sustainability Summit 2016 at Newcastle University Student’s Union and learnt about divestment and how we can encourage our universities to be more sustainable.

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Attending the NUS student Sustainability Conference

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Art Student, Helen Gunn’s environmental artwork.

 

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Interviewing BBC Sustainability Manager, Richard Smith for #DMUearthweek.

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The Estates Development Building

I’ve hugged some trees, interviewed a BBC Sustainability Manager, eaten a lot of Fairtrade chocolate, shared some gifs of really cute animals, created some polls on Twitter about bees, learned a lot about bats, watched pigeons out of the office window, stopped drinking bottled water, filmed some time lapses in the rain, learned that Karl Letten has terrible taste in films and comedy TV shows, turned off some lights, learned that we use rainwater in the Hugh Aston toilets, watched a few documentaries, tried to stop eating strawberries that have travelled all the way from Peru, written some articles for The Demon Online and made some friends.

Thank you all for having me, it’s been great!

If you’re interested in applying to be the next Green Behaviour Change Frontrunner, APPLY HERE through mygateway.

 

Alexandra Kilcran

Meat Free Monday Recipes

It can be difficult to know what to eat if you’re used to consuming meat frequently. We’ve got a couple of Meat Free Monday recipes that’ll stop you craving meat and you’ll want to eat everyday of the week!

Veggie Bolognese

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Ingredients: 

  • 150g pasta
  • 1tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • frozen veggie mince
  • 1 tin of tomatoes
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1tsp dried basil
  • 1tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • sprinkle of salt and pepper

Method:

  • Fry onions and garlic in oil add veggie mince
  • Add herbs and tomato puree
  • Once onions are caramelised, add tinned tomatoes.
  • Cook pasta, add bolognese, garnish with grated carrot.

Sweet Potato, Coconut & Spinach Curry

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Ingredients:

  • 1 red onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1tsp vegetable oil
  • 1 large sweet potato
  • 1 tin of coconut milk
  • 1 tin of tomatoes
  • 2 tsp of tomato puree
  • 2 handfuls of spinach
  • 2 tsp desiccated coconut
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1tsp paprika
  • 1tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp masala curry powder
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 2 tbsp corn flour
  • 80g rice of choice.

Method:

  • Fry onion and garlic in oil, add spices and tomato puree
  • Add coconut milk, tinned tomatoes, par-boiled sweet potato and spinach.
  • Let simmer, then add cornflour and nutritional yeast.
  • Cook rice with double the amount of water.
  • Top with desiccated coconut. Serve curry once as thick as desired.

If you try either of these recipes, share them on twitter and tag @sustainabledmu, we’d love to see them!

– Alexandra Kilcran, Green Behaviour Change Frontrunner

Artwork With an Environmental Twist

Final Year Fine Art student at DMU, Helen Gunn, has been producing some very interesting work around ecology  and sustainability and we thought we should share it with everyone.

This is the piece: ‘Broken – Crassulaceae’ 

The large sculpture was exhibited indoors and then installed in the DMU car park for a day in the summer of 2016.

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The sculpture concerns a plant, ecology and migration. The form is based on a perennial sedum belonging to the Crassulaceae family which evolved 100-60 million years ago.

The eco-artist stated that the Crassulaceae ‘Is a popular ‘bought garden plant’ because it conveniently survives neglect.  By representing the flower umbel with toy vehicles I make comparisons between the plant’s longevity and the short-lived era of the automobile; between global auto trade with its brand divisions and Crassulaceae species hybridisation and global spread through natural and cultivated systems.  The reversal of car scale to plant privileges the sedum representation, disturbing typical hierarchies and honours Crassulaceae longevity, also plant capacity to absorb harmful CO2 emissions released by driven vehicles.  The sculpture is constructed from recycled woods.  By presenting it as ‘stem broken’ the perennial capacity for re-growth is acknowledged. Vehicles forming the umbel were donated by children.’

Helen also created another piece titled ‘Green House’.
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The sculpture is made from hanging panels which are ‘sacrificial boards’. Wooden panels which are sacrificed during the fabrication of other projects.

Helen’s future work will focus on the changing climate and attitudes towards nature during this period.

Special thanks to Helen Gunn, for letting us discuss her brilliant environmental and Eco-conscious sculptures!

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– Alexandra Kilcran, Green Behaviour Change Frontrunner

We Wish You a Sustainable Christmas and a Waste Free New Year! ♻️🎄

We Wish You a Sustainable Christmas and a Waste Free New Year! ♻️🎄

We know it can be easy to buy too much food, or waste a lot during Christmas, but by using LED lights, only buying food which you know you’ll eat and maybe a treat or two here and there, buying and using sustainable wrapping paper or just buying less overall, you can enjoy Christmas without it having a negative effect on the environment!

Here are some really useful websites with tips on how to have a more sustainable Christmas:

Friends of the Earth – 25 Eco-friendly Christmas Tips

The Guardian – 7 Tips for Smart Christmas Recycling

Recycle This – Recycling at Christmas

Recycle Now – Recycling at Christmas

The Huffington Post – Reducing Food Waste

Love Food Hate Waste – Money Saving Christmas

Leicester City Council – Christmas and New Year Recycling

Energy Saving LED Christmas Lights

The Guardian – Minimalist Christmas

One Green Planet – Upcycled Christmas Gifts

 

 

 

Have a wonderful Christmas everyone!! ♻️🎄

New Green Behaviour Change Frontrunner! 🌱

Hello! I’m Alex Kilcran and I’m the new Green Behaviour Change Frontrunner in the Estates Department of DMU. My job is to manage the Sustainable DMU social media accounts and encourage staff and students to think about their role in looking after our environment. We support a number of initiatives for students including NUS Student Switch Off and NUS Green Impact, FREE Park and Ride for staff and Dr Bike sessions held frequently.

 

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I promise we do more than just hug trees!

Here are our social media accounts and other useful links, feel free to message our FB or Twitter accounts if you have any queries or wish to get involved further!

Facebook: Sustainable DMU

Twitter: Sustainable DMU

Instagram: Sustainable DMU

NUS Student Switch Off: NUS Student Switch Off InfoDMU Student Switch Off FB

FREE Park and Ride for staff: DMU Website