Sustainability Action Blog


Sustainability Week – and a whole lot more!

By Jessica Lobo |

February has been a busy month so far for sustainability at the University, and with the HEA Conference on Educating Global Citizens being hosted here next week, the excitement is far from over!

Kicking off the month with Sustainability Week, the Ethical and Environmental committee organised a week full of activities at the Students Union. Games throughout the week saw students competing to correctly sort out waste and recyclable items, ethically ranking high street shops, guessing endangered animals from the extinct or flourishing species, Where did your food come from?and racing against the clock to layer up and switch off electrical items! Each day had a different theme, starting off with food and waste on the 10th.

Students were invited to learn about the Green Label Project on the Monday and try out some of the vegetarian and vegan-friendly food that the university catering outlets offer, as well as finding out about the upcoming Waste Wars. Monday also saw the launch of the sustainability promise tree, which collected a lot of pledges throughout the week from students promising to make one difference to live more sustainably.

Conservation was Tuesday’s theme, and with stalls ranging from the RSPCA to the Marine Conservation Society, students had the opportunity to find out more about getting involved in some of the local projects happening in Southampton.

The Centre for Environmental Sciences held a talk on Wednesday to discuss “How my Degree prepared me for world of work in Environmental Consultancy”, and then Thursday saw the return of activities in the Students Union for a day themed on ethical shopping. The Fashion and Style Society joined in to promote ethical fashion and showcase some of their charity-shop fashion finds. Pop-up shops from Beatniks Emporium and The Shop Equality also came for the day, selling some of their vintage and fair trade produce, and an information stand for Swap Shop prompted staff and students to save the date for the next one on the 20th March.

E&E Sustainability Promise TreeFriday was the final day of activities in SUSU and in addition to the bike maintenance sessions run by RideRide (in conjunction with Sustrans and My Journey Southampton), students had an opportunity to get some free draught proofing materials from the Environment Centre as well as having the last chance to make a pledge for the promise tree.

Finishing the week with a bang was the all-day Sustainability Festival organised by Southampton Hubs. The day was a great success with over 30 students and 15 speakers giving up their Saturday to discuss sustainable development. Sustainability Action’s very own Julia Kendal started the day with the first talk, and she was followed by guests ranging from an MP and an environmental consultant, to local initiatives and international campaigners. The program was packed with talks and interactive workshops all day, and the lively market stall area at lunch time allowed participants to get involved and network with a variety of groups.

After such a busy week it was delight to see so many students turn up this Wednesday to take part in the University’s 8th Waste Wars. Staff and students worked in teams to survey our waste on campus and raced against one another to audit as many bags as possible. It was a lot of fun and turned out to be a great afternoon!

Waste Wars volunteers

Waste Wars volunteers

As mentioned above, the activities don’t end here, and next week will see the University of Southampton host the HEA Conference on Educating Global Citizens, which will include speakers, workshops, and the opportunity to take part in a simulation UN Sustainable Development Goals summit! It’s a great opportunity if you haven’t had a chance to join in with some of the sustainability events so far this month. Or, if you’ve already been enjoying some of the activities over the past couple of weeks then you’ll definitely not want to miss this one!

To find out more information and register for the event, visit our website here.  We hope to see you there!