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     

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Learn how to save water at home!

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Water is probably one of the most precious natural resources for both men and animals. Clean and pure water is a gift, ready to be used at our home. Indeed, we should all pay attention on how we use it.

There are a large number of ways to save water, and they all start with you.

So, what could you do in the kitchen?

First of all, if you wash your dishes (and maybe some of your lazy flatmates) by hand, don’t let the water run. It is better to fill one basin with wash water and the other with rinse water. While washing, soak pots and pans instead of letting the water run while you scrape them clean.

On the other hand, if you are lucky enough to have a dishwasher, then it would typically use less water than washing dishes by hand.

A very smart advice is to designate one glass for your drinking water each day, or refill a water bottle. This will also cut down on the number of glasses to wash! Win-win! If you like drinking cold water, then keep a jar or a plastic bottle of drinking water in the fridge instead of running the tap. This way, every drop goes down you and not the drain.

Another tip is to not use running water to unfreeze food. For water efficiency and food safety, defrost food in the refrigerator.

Now, let’s see what you can do during your cooking sessions! Before starting to prepare your meals, select the proper pan size for cooking. Large pans may require more cooking water than necessary. Then, try to cook food in as little water as possible. This also helps it retain more nutrients. Afterwards, you can reuse leftover water from cooked or steamed foods to start a nutritious soup, it is one more way to get eight glasses of water a day.

Always remember to collect the water you use while rinsing fruit and vegetables, because you can use it to water house plants or flowers!

And how could you save water in the bathroom?

Very straightforward advices:

Time your shower to keep it under 5 minutes and turn off the water while washing your hair. It takes just one second!

Turn off the water while you brush your teeth. Easy one!

Plug the sink instead of running the water to rinse your razor. Clever!

When washing your hands, turn the water off while you lather. Yes I can do it!

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In this post, I have shown you how saving water could be simple during your life at University and even after. These tips and many others come from an amazing website:

http://wateruseitwisely.com/100-ways-to-conserve/

Fedora Agosti (green Behaviour Change Frontrunner)

Making a Greener Impact at DMU

This week is our Green Impact Awards Ceremony and for me it’s always one of the highlights of my year. I love it so much because it’s a great opportunity to celebrate real sustainability in action and real change at De Montfort University (DMU).
For those that don’t know, Green Impact is a project led by the NUS which has been running at DMU for the past 4 years. Through the project, teams of staff compete to see who can be the greenest by completing a series of environmental actions contained in an online workbook. Each of the actions in the workbook has allocated points and depending on the number of actions completed and points scored teams are awarded Bronze, Bronze+, Silver or Gold awards.
But Green Impact is so much more than just a staff environmental behaviour change project, which in itself would be pretty awesome. Perhaps Green Impact’s greatest contribution to the sustainability agenda is what it delivers in terms of the student experience, student employability and skills development. Let me explain further:
The participating Green Impact teams complete as many of the online actions as possible and submit their workbook. While the teams are creating greener workspaces through their activities we are recruiting a team of keen and enthusiastic DMU students to train as environmental auditors.
The volunteer auditors receive some top quality auditor training via the NUS on how to conduct environmental audits, what to look for and what evidence the Green Impact teams should be providing. The auditors then audit each of the Green Impact teams to ensure that the environmental actions have been completed to the required standard. The students provide feedback to the teams about how well they have done or if further actions are needed. This information forms the basis for the awards ceremony that takes place this week.
So not only do our student auditors get quality training on conducting environmental audits they also get firsthand experience of how to actually conduct an audit. And judging from the feedback I’ve received they really conduct an audit!
But perhaps more powerful than the skills and the training is the first hand experience of how staff at DMU are working to make the university a greener place. A clear demonstration that the activities of teams is not in any way green-wash; but that there is real dedication and a clear willingness to make DMU a more sustainable organisation. So evident is this dedication amongst the teams that auditors returning after the audits are really rooting for the teams and really want them to reach the award level they aspire to.
For me Green Impact offers so much to the sustainability agenda and this is why I enjoy the awards ceremony so much. This year will be even more special as so many of the student environmental auditors will be joining the Green Impact teams at the award ceremony to celebrate their successes.
And the future for Green Impact is looking good in Leicester and Leicestershire. Both universities in Leicester are taking part in Green Impact; students from the Faculty of Business & Law are working with LOROS through our BusinessWorks programme to deliver Green Impact; and Leicestershire County Council is also taking part in the project this year.
Green Impact offers so much to staff, student and participating organisations all while delivering environmental behaviour change. In short the project is an excellent way of delivering a greener impact at DMU.
Karl Letten
Environmental & Sustainability Officer