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Sustainability Newsletter

SPRING 2017

Sustainability Week 02.05.2017 - 04.05.2017

First prize for Bangor in CIWM Sustainability & Resource Awards Green Wellbeing at Treborth Botanic Garden

and much more...

#sustainablebangor


First prize for Bangor in CIWM Sustainability & Resource Awards Bangor University is among the stars in the prestigious Sustainability & Resource Awards from the Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM) for its #LoveHalls campaign, winning first prize in the Best Resources Project by Facilities Management category. Speaking on behalf of the winning team, Bangor’s Residential Life Manager in Student Halls, Deirdre McIntyre said: “I’m thrilled to receive such an accolade from the highly respected CIWM. The award is testament to the vision, energy and hard work of the Residential Life and Sustainability Lab teams. We are also fortunate to have forward thinking and enthusiastic students as partners in this project, through the residential Campus Life Programme. Our collaboration forms the foundation for excellent work in future sustainability ventures.”

Judged by the most respected experts in the sector, these long-standing awards are given for outstanding achievement in the sustainability, resource and waste industries. This is the first year that Bangor University has entered the awards and is the only university to reach the finals, competing alongside famous national and international companies such as Aldi, Jaguar Landrover and London & Whipsnade Zoo, environmental consultancies such as Ramboll Environ, and large public sector organisations including Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, and several county and city councils.


The Sustainability Lab at the Students Opportunities Fair The Sustainability Lab Team were at the Student Opportunities Fair in February, a popular event following the Serendipity Welcome Week fair, where students sign up for clubs, societies, sports and volunteering. We met hundreds of enthusiastic students and leaders of the future and promoted the University’s aim of becoming ‘The Sustainable University’, and working towards applying the principles of the Well-being of Future Generations Act to all our work. The success of any sustainability initiative depends on input from every member of the community, and at the Fair hundreds of students were inspired to get involved with sustainability both personally and professionally. The fair was also an opportunity to launch ‘Go Green Week’ and to promote Undeb Bangor’s’ ‘Greener Bangor’ project and to collect stories and memories from students that show how trees have shaped our society, landscape and lives to contribute to the UK Charter for Trees, Woods and People. “The Student Opportunities Fair was a

great opportunity to engage with students about the opportunities available to them to develop their sustainable practices, as well as learn more about the Sustainability Lab and sustainability@Bangor”, said Mair Rowlands, Student Liaison Officer for The Sustainability Lab.”


Another First for Bangor University’s Environment Bangor University has become the first organisation in Wales, and indeed the UK, to achieve Level 5 of the new 2016 version of the Green Dragon Standard for Environmental Management. The new Standard was only launched in July last year, and certified organisations are being given 12 months to satisfy the more stringent criteria set out in the 2016 version. Ricky Carter, Environmental Manager, Property and Campus Services explains, “Our Environmental Management procedures are audited annually by Groundwork Wales, who closely examine our energy and water conservation measures, greenhouse gas emissions, and waste and travel management. Rather than wait another year for the new Standard to become compulsory, we elected to be assessed against it immediately after it was launched.” Vice-Chancellor Professor John G Hughes added, “I am delighted with this news. Achieving the award so early after it was introduced is a credit to the many staff and students who are actively involved in

protecting and enhancing the environment in and around Bangor University. I am particularly pleased with the way we are reducing our carbon footprint year on year through a range of initiatives from LED lighting and heating system upgrades to bin-less offices and electric vehicles. In addition, energy use in the majority of our buildings is now monitored every half hour through our Automated Metering System, and this is becoming invaluable in helping us understand where even further efficiencies can be made”.


Bangor University students show bags of support The British Heart Foundation (BHF) partnership with Bangor University, which encouraged students to donate their unwanted items at the end of the last academic term has proved to be a huge success. For the second year running, BHF shops partnered with Bangor University to encourage students to have a clear out and donate the clothes, shoes, books, DVDs, bags and small electricals they no longer needed at the end of the academic year, enabling the charity to recycle goods that

might otherwise be wasted. Throughout the scheme Bangor University students were incredibly supportive and made full use of the donation drop-off points. The successful partnership has seen 1,452 bags donated to the BHF collection bins located around the Bangor University campus and 645 large furniture items were donated which might have raised up to ÂŁ45,193 for BHF shops during the last two years. The money raised from this partnership will go on to fund BHF researchers who are relentlessly working


towards the fight for every heartbeat. Amanda Purkiss BHF University Account Executive, said: “We’ve been delighted with the response from Bangor University students and their overwhelming support. Each BHF shop needs to receive 400 bags of unwanted items a week and thanks to generous donations from the students and staff of Bangor University we have been able to help our shops in Bangor. Students can soon donate again during the moving out period this summer. Where to Donate: Ffriddoedd Village – Halls Office Reception, Alaw & Braint Common Room. Permanent collection bin outside Borth Hall. If this is full please contact reception. St Mary’s Village – Halls Office Reception, Barlow’s Common Room.

All FOOD donations to go in BLUE Big Give Boxes in all hall foyers. What to Donate: Unwanted clothes, shoes, accessories, books, bric-a-brac, CD’s, DVD’s, and small electrical items (no duvets or pillows please). FOOD can be donated in the BLUE ‘Big Give’ boxes in every hall - Non-perishable, unopened food items only. How to Donate: Clothes and other - Please bag up your unwanted items into the white BHF bags provided (or ask at your halls office) and put them in the RED collection boxes and collection banks across Halls Campus. Please put FOOD in the BLUE ‘Big Give’ boxes in all hall foyers.


sustainability taking place across Wales. In the words of Dr Einir Young, Director of Sustainability at Bangor University:

Bangor University wins Sustain Wales Award Bangor University came first in the Sustain Wales Awards Further Education category. The Award recognised the educational institution that demonstrated strong evidence of impact or innovation, and was sponsored by Acuity Legal. More than 11,000 individuals participated in the vote and we extend a special ‘thank you’ to all who voted for Bangor University! Congratulations to all the other eight winners and nominees; it was inspiring to learn of all the excellent work on

“It’s just over a year since The Sustainability Lab was established as the corporate focus of sustainability at Bangor University. We are growing into a hub and catalyst for bringing sustainability to life in all aspects of what the University does through research, teaching and learning, public engagement and our campus affairs. It’s relatively early days on our journey towards becoming The Sustainable University so I was delighted to be presented with the award.”


Bangor in top 4 % of World’s Greenest Universities Bangor University’s commitment to sustainability has once again earned it a commanding position in an international league table of environmentally friendly institutions. The UI Green Metric, a league table of the world’s greenest universities, was first launched by Universitas Indonesia in 2010 to highlight sustainability and environmental management at universities around the globe. Each year the number of Universities taking part increases; this year 516 universities from 74 countries took part, an increase from 407 universities last year. In the current league table, Bangor has moved up twelve places to 16th position, placing us in the top 4% of the participating universities.

Ricky Carter, Environmental Manager, Property and Campus Services added: “We are continuing to make significant progress not only at home but globally, as shown by this latest news. Our environmental commitments are clearly set out in our Environmental Management System which is certified to both the internationally recognised ISO14001, and Welsh Green Dragon Environmental Standards”. Dr Einir Young, Director of Sustainability responded to the announcement saying:

“Driving environmental improvements and resource efficiencies throughout the Vice Chancellor Professor John G Hughes organisation is a challenge without end. We recognise that sound environmental said: management is essential to our aim of developing and applying innovative “I am delighted that Bangor continues to ways of integrating consideration for maintain its position as a sustainability sustainability and the well-being of future leader within the international higher education sector. This latest announcement generations into everything we do, through demonstrates our ongoing commitment our research, our teaching and our own supply chain”. to taking positive action in promoting sustainability and achieving continual environmental improvement”.


show empathy and insist that everyone is treated fairly and given the opportunity to live life to their full capacity.” Dr. Einir Young, Director of Sustainability, Bangor University

In memory of Dr Rhydian Fôn James’s work and achievements

The Rhydian Fôn James Fund The overwhelming tributes and support that the North Wales Society for the Blind received in Rhydian’s memory has allowed them to establish The Rhydian Fôn James Fund. The fund’s aim is to support blind and partially sighted people in North Wales to further their education or gain employment by funding or contributing towards the cost of specialist equipment, training and assessments. We are pleased that two students from Bangor University have already received support from the Rhydian Fôn James Fund.

Rhydian was a talented academic specialising in green economics and a valued member of the Sustainability Lab team at Bangor University. His passion above else was supporting and helping others, especially through his campaign work on social justice and human rights. Sadly, Rhydian’s health deteriorated in 2015 and he died peacefully on the 12th of January 2016. The Sustainability Lab have worked with Rhydian’s family to create a dedicated section of our website to celebrate Rhydian’s life and achievements, and ensure that everyone can access Rhydian’s publications. “Rhydian was an astute academic with a sharp mind and a cheerful personality who’s left a huge gap in our lives. Our hope as a team is that this website in memory of Rhydian will grow to be a digital space for promoting a greater understanding of the needs of those who live with disabilities, both visible and invisible and enable us to

Further details on the Grant Fund, including qualifying criteria and application form, can be found on The North Wales Society for the Blind website, or alternatively call 01248 353604.


are volunteer groups that help to keep the gardens maintained, with regular gardening sessions each Wednesday and Friday and we have a monthly Sunday workparty day too. When asking volunteers why they like to garden, it’s great to hear “it makes me feel good”.

Green Wellbeing at Treborth Botanic Garden Treborth Botanic Garden, situated on the shores of the Menai Strait is owned by Bangor University and exists to further the conservation, sustainable use and enjoyment of plants and the natural world through education, research, training and community engagement. The garden is comprised of native ancient woodland, species rich unimproved grassland, fruit orchards and many mature trees and shrubs. There are six glasshouses of varying temperatures, with special collections including orchids, cacti, succulents, and carnivorous plants. What is Treborth doing about green wellbeing? It is now well researched that being outside in a green space has a positive impact for improving health and mental wellbeing. From the greenhouses, out to the woodland shore, Treborth has a great diversity of green spaces which can provide an experience to help with positive mental and physical health wellbeing. The Friends of Treborth Botanic Garden and Students for Treborth Action Group (STAG)

Many people of all ages come to the garden to get outside into the fresh air and do some physical exercise, some say it’s much cheaper and more interesting than the going to a gym! Everyone joins in at their own pace and there is a real sense of personal and group achievement, especially when people are getting involved in a project. It’s a great way to meet new people if you want to, share common interests with others, and learn new skills for yourself too. Gardening is a great stress buster; it can

help people through a specific period of difficulty in their lives, helping get back on top of things and restore balance when life feels out of control. Digging, pruning, raking and weeding each provide a physical outlet for the tension we store in our bodies and minds. Want to find out more? Come along, have a look around and have a chat about volunteering at Treborth Botanic Garden.


S-Lab Trains Makerere University Students and Management on Sustainability As part of a continued Sustainability Lab collaboration with Makerere University which is aimed at working together to promote Sustainable Development at MU and its community through shared learning, Dr Einir Young conducted sustainability trainings to students and the management team of the University in Uganda in January. Through this collaboration, Makerere University is embarking on a journey to embrace sustainability in all its operations and to improve its overall sustainability performance. The training offered by Dr Young was a nudge in the right direction by sharing knowledge about Sustainability and Wellbeing of Future Generations, as well as sharing lessons about how Bangor University has embarked on a similar journey. The training sessions were attended by over 100 students and many members of the management team. Both students and management were introduced to a new concept of Sustainability and Wellbeing of future Generations, and it raised interest among both students and the management team. It persuaded the University’s sustainability programme to explore the concept as a guiding tool in the design and implementation of sustainability projects at Makerere. This partnership has informed planning and implementation of the University’s sustainability projects, it has also inspired a number of student led projects like improving waste management and recycling at the University, greening projects, and energy

efficiency projects among others. The University is also preparing to implement a student led waste sorting and recycling project in students halls of residence, it will be a test to see how recycling can be introduced to the university. The project intends to be supported with research done by students of psychology at Makerere and collaborating with the psychology students and staff at Bangor. In her training Dr Young shared information about the steps Bangor University has taken to help students recycle better in their halls of residence and on campus. As part of Dr Young’s training to students, a local plastic recycling company was invited to demonstrate to students the importance of recycling plastic and what happens to plastic when it is collected and recycled. The students were also told about the financial

opportunities available to the university if plastic is effectively sorted and supplied to the company. A student who has already benefited from supplying waste plastic to this company shared his story and how this trade helped him to earn his and his siblings school fees. This collaboration has made significant strides in supporting Makerere University to make progress on its sustainability agenda, and it has inspired a lot of learning from both universities that is benefiting students and staff at Bangor and Makerere.


Welsh fruit trees success for Bangor A hugely enthusiastic and dedicated team of Bangor University students volunteered to plant dozens of Welsh variety fruit trees in and around campus. Supported by The Sustainability Lab, the Woodland Trust, Undeb Bangor and with grant funding from NUS, and fuelled by tea and cake, the student team made new homes for 40 sturdy young trees at the University Ffriddoedd Halls Village. Gabe Hibberd, chair of Bangor’s Students’ Sustainability Action Group who organised the tree planting said: “This really will open the door to sustainable thinking. These trees in Bangor will take 10 years before everyone sees the benefit, but planting for the future is how we create a more resilient, food-secure and beautiful campus. This is surely something we can all agree and help each other achieve.” The planting day was part of the students’ ‘Greening Bangor’ project which has also been collecting stories and memories that show how trees have shaped our society, landscape and lives to contribute to the UK Charter for Trees, Woods and People, and

students have managed to collect up to a 100 stories. After the success of Bangor’s Welsh fruit tree planting, Bangor’s sustainability sister in Uganda, Makerere University, plans to match Bangor tree for tree. Supported by Hub Cymru Africa, this work is part of the exciting and ever growing partnership between Bangor’s Sustainability Lab, Student Sustainability Action Group and Undeb Bangor and Makerere’s Sustainability Programme to foster sustainable thinking for current and future generations across the globe, and to learn from each other by sharing experiences.


Internationals Go Green Forty five international Bangor University students got together in March to volunteer on a Beach Clean organised by the International Student Support Office in collaboration with the North Wales Wildlife Trust. Students from all over the World travelled to Newborough Beach and picked all sorts of rubbish found on the beach and sand dunes, from shoes to plastic bags and cotton ear buds. They covered 200m of coastline, from the dunes right down to the sea, and contributed to the Marine Conservation Society’s (MCS) Beachwatch Litter Survey by logging all the items found. With all the data collected, MCS will create an annual report on litter, with data from beaches around the globe that will help implement future environmental policies. As well as volunteering for a cleaner Planet,

Bangor University international students got the chance to collaborate with a local organisation and work to help the local community to get a cleaner environment. Thanks to Dawn Thomas, from the North Wales Wildlife Trust, the students learned a lot about marine biology, and the importance of environmental protection; they also got some tips on how to reduce our impact on the environment and wildlife by simply modifying some of our daily life routines and behaviours. It was a truly FANTASTIC day! THINK GLOBAL, ACT LOCAL


Bangor University Sailing Club clinch 1st place in University Sailing Sustainability Challenge Bangor University Sailing Club clinched first place in the RYA and British Marine’s joint environment initiative ‘The Green Blue’ for the University Sailing Sustainability Challenge 2016-17. Environmental issues are a hot topic in lecture halls and common rooms across the UK and most students are more than familiar with sustainability challenges that cause greatest concerns. Set up by The Green Blue and supported by the British University Sailing Association (BUSA), the University Sailing Sustainability Challenge 2016-17 provided an ideal platform for university sailors to demonstrate how achievable sustainable boating can be to the rest of the boating community. After six months of enthusiastic competition, the successful students from Bangor University Sailing Club accepted their prize on the main stage at the RYA Suzuki Dinghy Show at the Alexandra Palace in London. Having clinched first place, the Sailing Club received the competition’s £500 top prize along with their certificate of congratulations. Edinburgh University Sailing Club (EUSC) clinched 2nd prize, and in 3rd place was the University of Plymouth Sailing and Powerboating Club. Representatives of all three university sailing clubs were invited onto the main stage at the RYA Suzuki Dinghy Show to have their awards presented by Olympic medallist Mark Covell.

Environmental Outreach Officer for The Green Blue, Kate Fortnam, congratulated all the universities for their efforts and achievement with their certificates and prizes. She said: “It’s been fantastic to see so many University Sailing Clubs committed to making their sport as environmentally sustainable as possible. Our winning universities have clearly demonstrated their dedication and commitment to keep their sailing environment clean, safe and beautiful for themselves and future generations of sailors.” To recognise the achievements of the winning clubs, certificates were presented to their Sustainability Officers whose role was to organise, encourage and lead their club through the challenge to successfully complete a number of sustainable boating actions. At each achievement level, a number of sustainable actions had to be achieved and evidenced by competing university

sailing clubs. These included performing an environmental audit of their sailing venue to identify and improve areas that can be made more sustainable, ensuring all their members use reusable water bottles as opposed to one-use plastic bottles, installing an oil/fuel spill kit at their sailing venue to clean up accidental spills when refuelling, and demonstrating ‘check, clean and dry’ best practice to minimise the spread of alien species around UK waters.


From the Director’s Chair It’s a great pleasure to contribute to the Spring 2017 newsletter which summarises the ‘sustainable’ achievements of BU staff and students. Since May 2016 the University has adopted the Well-being of Future Generations framework to explain sustainability and as a way of managing our decision making and activities. As a Sustainability Lab we are fully aware that actions speak louder than words. One of the emerging lessons this year is the constant reminder that messages need to be repeated many times for them to infiltrate the sub-conscious mind. According to our friends in the School of Psychology it might be necessary to reinforce a message up to fifteen times and more to be embedded as ‘the way we do things around here’. So here’s repeating the summery of the well-

being of future generations framework: ONE sustainable development principle FOUR pillars FIVE ways of working (the 5 WOWs) SEVEN well-being goals The world in recent months seems to be a more unpredictable place – who would have foreseen the results of the ‘Brexit’ vote, the US election, the Turkish referendum etc. In the run-up to the Local Government elections in Wales and the Snap General Election in Wales and the rest of the UK we can use the Well-being of future generation’s framework to interrogate the political manifestos of all parties. Do the Parties/candidates have a clearly articulated and credible vision for the ONE principle – i.e. ensuring that we can meet our current needs without jeopardising our ability


to meet our needs in the future? Are the Parties/candidates committed to giving equal weighting to the FOUR PILERS – the economy, the environment, society and culture? Or are they putting all the eggs into the economic (or other) basket at the expense of the others?

A more equal Wales/UK A Wales/UK of more cohesive communities A Wales/UK of vibrant culture where the Welsh language is thriving (there is absolutely no reason why awareness of the Welsh language and culture is more widespread across the UK or why other languages and culture aren’t embraced and celebrated) A Wales/UK that are globally responsible. We can and should use these principles to challenge as many aspects of our lives as possible – at home, at the University, in our workplace and in the community. How about it? How about taking up the challenge to park our cynicism and hold ourselves and our politicians to account and really make a difference?

Do the Parties provide evidence that they intend to adopt the FIVE WOWs?

We will be celebrating the Sustainability Lab’s

Is the long-term context of their proposals clear? Can they demonstrate how their proposals will prevent things from getting worse and do they offer ideas on how to improve things? Will they integrate their vision along the lines of the seven well-being goals or do they have a tendency to ‘silo’ the issues? Is there any evidence that they can collaborate with others and are inclusive? And how about the well-being goals? Have they got any ideas on how they will deliver A more prosperous Wales/UK A more resilient Wales/UK A healthier Wales/UK

second birthday in June. Many thanks to all of you for your commitment and enthusiasm as you collaborate with us. I look forward to another exciting year ahead.

Spring 2017 newsletter  
Spring 2017 newsletter  
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