University of Sussex aiming to eliminate single-use plastics by 2025 and become one of the world's most sustainable universities

Catering, stationery, laboratories, halls of residence, offices and events will be the key areas where the university will look to eliminate the use of disposable plastics.

The University of Sussex has committed to eliminating avoidable single-use plastics by 2025, in its annual sustainability report today, as part of its ambition to become one of the world's most sustainable universities.

Catering, stationery, laboratories, halls of residence, offices and events will be the key areas where the university will look to eliminate the use of disposable plastics.

Where the use of plastics is unavoidable, the University have made a new pledge to encourage the use of recycled plastics, where practicable, and support manufacturers that make products from locally sourced waste plastics.

Earlier this year, The University was named among the top 50 in the world - and among the top ten in the UK - in the Times Higher Education (THE) World Impact Rankings 2021.

Professor Rachel Mills, provost at the University of Sussex, said: “Our strong progress on developing our sustainability plans has been a bright spot during the darker moments of the pandemic.

“The Sustainable Sussex strategy shows how we will have a lasting impact in the sustainability of our local communities and how we will create one of the greenest, most biodiverse campuses in the world.”

Earlier this year, The University was named among the top 50 in the world - and among the top ten in the UK - in the Times Higher Education (THE) World Impact Rankings 2021.

This ranking system measures a university’s effectiveness in delivering on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Catering, stationery, laboratories, halls of residence, offices and events will be the key areas where the university will look to eliminate the use of disposable plastics.

The University’s annual sustainability report - published alongside three new policy documents on sustainable food, waste and transport - details the steps that Sussex is making to deliver on all 17 of the UN SDGs.

The new report also details how the university has increased the proportion of waste it recycles by almost 40% in the 2019/2020 academic year, collected almost 60 tonnes of food waste for conversion into compost in the same period and self-generated more than 13% of its total energy needs, via the university’s solar array, one of the largest solar farms at any university campus in the UK.

Sam Waugh, sustainability manager at the University of Sussex and author of the new report, said: “I am really excited to publish all of our great achievements from last year. The pace of progress around sustainable waste, transport and decarbonisation is putting us on course to realise our sustainability goals and strengthen our resilience and collective leadership in the face of the current climate crisis.

“I am looking forward to continuing to work with staff, the Students’ Union, stakeholders and academics to further bring our vision of being one of the most sustainable universities in the world to life.”

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