SDG12: Responsible Consumption and Production
The University is committed to promoting and delivering more responsible consumption and production patterns through its operations and supply chains, through sustainable management practices and efficient use of natural resources.
Waste and Resource Management
Responsible waste disposal is a priority at the university, ensuring that we protect not only our land by ensuring we have enough external bins in the right places for food, mixed recycling, general waste, dog waste and coffee cups but also by diverting 100% of our waste away from landfill. Our Waste disposal policies are central to demonstrating the way in which we manage all types of waste produced by the university directly or indirectly. This includes the disposal of Hazardous and Offensive materials as well as how we minimise the use of plastic and disposable items on site.
Working closing with our waste contractor the University tracks waste generated across its estate, covering all waste streams created, location, recycling rates and waste sent for energy recovery. Our goals are to increase our recycling rates from 70% to 80% in 2021/22, eliminate single use plastics and to minimise consumable items. Future goals are to work closely with our supply chains to avoid waste being created in the first-place Various initiatives take place across the University to promote recycling and increase our recycling rates, including the use of a Student Environmental Scorecard for students residing in halls to monitor and encourage student engagement with recycling.
As part of the University’s commitment to improving recycling rates and resource management, the University launched the Up For The Cup project. Hubbub launched its national cup recycling campaign, The Cup Fund, the UKs largest grant fund to support ambitious projects that boost paper cup recycling in the UK. The funding supports engagement, awareness raising, marketing, infrastructure and collection. The University was awarded a grant of £75,000 to collect and recycled 160,000 cups across Northampton. The Up for The Cup project is a socially impactful project, with 6 formal partners covering the major employers within the town centre and the major transport hub providing a through geographic coverage of Northampton.
The official partner organisations for the Up for The Cup campaign in Northampton are:
- The Students’ Union
- Grosvenor Shopping Northampton
- Northampton General Hospital
- Royal & Derngate
- Northamptonshire Waste Partnership (a collaboration of all the local authorities)
- Northampton Train Station (West Midlands Trains)
- University of Northampton
Other key stakeholders are:
The Up for The Cup project is being delivered in collaboration with Hubbub, the project partners with the University’s 2nd Year Advertising & Digital Marketing BA (Hons) students playing an integral role in the campaigns delivery. The students are tasked with the responsibility to devise a year-long marketing campaign to support the successful delivery of the campaign in Northampton.
In recognition of the role the students play, the project was a Green Gown Finalist 2021 in the Student Engagement category.
Please check out our latest research for SDG12: Responsible Consumption and Production
The University works closely with our catering suppliers to ensure that locally and ethically sourced meat, fruit and vegetables are used within all of our food outlets. This commitment is reflected in the purchase our fair-trade coffee, locally sourced food and seasonal menus, which contain both vegetarian and vegan options. The University’s commitment to ethical procurement is detailed within our Ethical and Sustainable Procurement Policy. Our caters also work closely with us in implanting our Single use Plastics and Disposable Items policy in reducing waste from disposable cups, replaced take away packing with compostable packaging and prior to lockdown provided eat in meals on crockery.
The university reports on several aspects of the SDGs through formal reporting processes and via the SDG webpages. Our Sustainable Development goals report and End of Year Environment & Sustainability reports provides an overview of our Environment and Sustainability and estate development activities for the academic year. Additional reporting of progress against sustainability targets and action plans for delivering against the coming 12 months targets are contained within our externally audited Investors In the Environment Manual.
The University is committed to pushing the SDG 2030 agenda across its networks and using its partnerships and resources to drive impact towards SDG goals. This is embodied at the top of the organisation, with the Vice Chancellor Nick Petford’s personal commitment to the SDGs. Examples of this commitment within SDG12 is leading discussions on global leadership and sustainability at the Inbush Conference with Amity University, India. Further collaboration for the SDG best practice, is demonstrated through the Research by the Institute for Creative Leather Technologies (ICLT) with the Confederation of National Associations of Tanners and Dressers of the European Community (COTANCE) and European Commission, utilised ICLT’s internationally renowned expertise and reputation to better understand the Health and Safety (H&S) and sustainability risks along the leather value chain and how they are managed in tanneries. This research was reported to the European Commission to inform policy development and dialogue in this area as part of their Social Dialogue programme. Further examples of cross sectoral dialogue about the SDGs with the Institute for Creative Leather Technologies and the ISII has presented research to the OECD on health and safety in tannery supply-chains as part of their Forum on Due Diligence in the Garment and Footwear sector.