Sustainability within the education industry
There are many changes being made to organisations within the education sector, schools, colleges and universities are all putting in different efforts to ensure that they are heading towards the right direction of being more environmentally friendly. Below we have highlighted the changes that are being made to move the education industry into a more climate-friendly position.
A lot of education organisations are beginning to roll out new sustainable teachings to educate students about climate change from a young age so they can start to implement changes into their lives to become more environmentally friendly. Students learn best and are more engaged when they are able to connect what they are learning about to their real life.
Changing or cutting down on resources
This is one of the most challenging parts of the education industry, wanting to somehow cut down on necessary but not environmentally friendly resources that have been used for many years. Paper has always been a massive part of education, however, schools and universities are now beginning to use technology such as smartphones and tablets to set homework, assignments and general classroom tasks.
Connecting to nature
According to Economics of Biodiversity: The Dasgupta Review, children’s connection to nature declines in childhood all the way into their mid-teens. By connecting children to nature more frequently, their respect and love for it increases. Other than being more aware of how important green spaces and nature is to our lives, nature also benefits mental health, which we know is an ongoing issue with the younger generation during this current time.
Building decarbonisation is reducing the emissions produced by buildings that impact climate change. With all education being taught in these buildings and with universities and schools representing 36% of total UK public sector buildings, according to Gov.co.uk, the introduction of decarbonisation is important and essential. Adapting and building new facilities that respond and align with climate change positively will be a challenge, but through the development of climate resilience and decarbonisation, it is possible.
Variation of waste disposable bins
This may be an obvious one, but schools and universities are beginning to roll out more recycling and general waste bins around campus and in buildings to get students into the habit of recycling without any excuses.
In 2021, Manchester Metropolitan University was named the UK’s number one most sustainable University, due to its commitment to cutting down on carbon emissions and although students can’t necessarily get involved with those technical procedures, the introduction of bins being placed almost everywhere across campus will have contributed, as well as the encouragement of ‘don’t bin it, donate it’ when students move out of their accommodation.
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