Student Life: Living Sustainably

When it comes to modern student life, a new focus is emerging: living sustainably. No longer is it enough to merely manage tight budgets and keep on top of course work, students are striving to make a positive impact on the environment too. For students renting in the UK, there are numerous ways to live more sustainably. In this article, we delve into a handful of top tips that can help students become green influencers, making mindful food choices, and adopting sustainable living practices.

Organic Foods Marketplace

1. Mindful Food Choices

One of the easiest places to start your sustainability journey is with your food choices. By being more mindful of what we eat, we can have a massive influence on our individual carbon footprints.

Go Local and Seasonal

Aim to shop local, seeking out farmers’ markets, local produce stores, or even considering a vegetable box delivery service. Local food not only supports the community economy but also reduces your carbon footprint due to fewer transportation emissions.

Embrace Plant-Based Eating

Another way to be more mindful of your food choices is by incorporating more plant-based meals into your diet. A study from the University of Oxford showed that cutting meat and dairy products from your diet could reduce an individual’s carbon footprint from food by up to 73%.

2. Becoming a Green Influencer

Another aspect of sustainable student living involves becoming a green influencer. In our hyper-connected world, we all have the potential to inspire others and create positive change.

Green Blogging and Vlogging

If you are passionate about sustainable living, consider starting a blog or vlog to share your journey. By doing so, you could influence your peers, imparting wisdom about how to live sustainably.

Supporting Sustainable Brands

Another way to be a green influencer is by supporting and promoting sustainable brands. When shopping, look for products with minimal packaging, and those produced ethically and sustainably. Show your support on social media – a simple like, share, or comment can go a long way in promoting these brands to a wider audience.

3. Sustainable Living Tips

As well as adjusting your diet and online influence, there are numerous practical measures you can take to live sustainably.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Try to reduce your consumption, reuse items as much as possible, and ensure you’re recycling correctly. For instance, if you’re living in a shared student house, why not create a communal recycling system to make it easier for everyone involved?

Save Energy

Another simple yet effective step is to be more mindful of your energy usage. Switch off lights when you leave a room, unplug electronics when not in use, and use energy-saving lightbulbs. If you’re in a position to change your energy provider, consider switching to a green supplier.

Travel Smart

Consider walking, cycling, or using public transportation instead of driving. If you do need to drive, consider car-sharing with friends or flatmates.

4. Eco-friendly Student Accommodation

In recent years, UK estate agents have seen a significant rise in demand for sustainable student accommodation. From energy-efficient homes to sustainable student dormitories, eco-friendly accommodation is now on many students’ priority list.

Energy-Efficient Student Homes

When looking for a place to rent, ask your estate agent about the property’s energy efficiency rating. A higher rating means that the property is more energy-efficient, which not only reduces your carbon footprint but could also lead to lower utility bills.

Sustainable Student Dormitories

Many UK universities are making strides in sustainability, with some offering eco-friendly student dormitories. These can include features like solar panels, rainwater harvesting systems, and high-efficiency insulation.

5. Creating a Green Campus Community

Finally, there’s strength in numbers. One of the most impactful ways to promote sustainability is by fostering a green campus community.

Join or Start a Green Society

Most universities have environmental or green societies. If yours doesn’t, consider starting one. These groups can organise events, initiatives, and campaigns to promote sustainability on campus and beyond.

Promote Sustainability in University Policy

As students, you can also have a say in your university’s policies. Lobby for more eco-friendly policies on campus, such as increased recycling facilities, more plant-based food options, or green energy procurement.

Living sustainably as a student is not just about individual choices. It’s about influencing those around you and advocating for wider change in your university and local community. So, whether you’re just starting your sustainability journey or you’re already a seasoned green influencer, remember that every step you take contributes to a more sustainable future.

No doubt, navigating student life whilst trying to live sustainably can be a challenging journey. Yet, it is through these challenges that we learn, grow, and make a meaningful difference in our world. Here’s to making our planet greener, one student flat at a time.