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Waste reduction

We aim to increase the amount of waste recycled while decreasing the total amount of waste generated overall across the University.

To ensure we are achieving the highest environmental standards, we are implementing the EcoCampus Environmental Management System across all of our UK campuses. EcoCampus is the environmental management scheme for higher and further education, and is in line with the international management system standard ISO 14001.  

Having an Environmental Management System in place ensures we have identified all the possible environmental impacts arising from our operations, and are working to reduce those impacts and eliminate them where possible.  

We have achieved the EcoCampus Bronze award and we are currently working towards Silver.

Electric vehicle collecting waste

Our general waste

Suez, our waste contractor is working with us to help us achieve better environmental outcomes.

Suez take our waste leftover after recycling and process it under controlled conditions to produce electricity and heat. This is used for multiple purposes, like heating thousands of homes or nearby businesses. This is a sustainable way to dispose of waste, rather than sending it to landfill. 

A hand leaning into the recycling bin with a empty water bottle

Our recycling

We also use Suez to dispose of our recycling in an efficient and sustainable way.

Suez has many recycling facilities where they process dry mixed recycling like paper, cardboard, steel and aluminium cans, plastics, and glass. It uses highly efficient technologies to maximise the quality of recycling. Any materials that can't be recycled will be turned into fuel rather than being sent to landfill. 

What can be recycled? 

While we are achieving a good level of recycling at the University, recycling is still a form of waste disposal with an environmental and financial cost.   

In order to reduce waste even further we are working on new ways to support staff and students to have a ‘buy less’ mindset both at home and on campus. This means being thoughtful about the things we buy and use, including thinking about what will happen to those things when we've finished with them. 

Find out what can be recycled on campus.

This is for all non-recyclable domestic waste. At the moment this also includes all food waste, both cooked and uncooked. 

This is also the correct bin for any type of disposable coffee cup. Coffee cups cannot go in recycling bins – even if they are labelled eco-friendly, compostable or biodegradable. 

We do not send any waste to landfill. Waste that cannot be recycled is incinerated in an energy-from-waste facility.  

Mixed recycling 

This is for clean recycling including tins, cans, paper, and plastic pots, tubs, and trays.  


For rinsed glass bottles and jars.  


There are separate bins for paper in areas where larger amounts of paper may be generated. 

Confidential waste 

This is for paper waste that contains confidential information. This is shredded before being recycled. 


Collection points for used batteries can also be found in most buildings. 

Inside the University a shot of plastic tube when you can recycle your batteries

Other types of waste the University needs to dispose of includes waste electrical items, hazardous wastes such as chemicals and oils, gardening, and grounds waste, amongst other things.