Posts Tagged ‘environment’


Recycling Conserves ResourcesRecycle cycle

When we recycle, used materials are converted into new products, reducing the need to consume natural resources. Recycling helps conserve important raw materials and protects natural habitats for the future.

Recycling saves energy

Using recycled materials in the manufacturing process uses considerably less energy than that required for producing new products from raw materials.  More energy is required to extract, refine, transport and process raw materials ready for industry compared with providing industry-ready materials.

Recycling helps protect the environmentRecycle tree

Recycling reduces the need for extracting, refining and processing raw materials all of which create
substantial air and water pollution. As recycling saves energy it also reduces greenhouse gas emissions, which helps to tackle climate change.

Recycling reduces landfill

When we recycle the amount of rubbish sent to landfill sites reduces. There are over 1,500 landfill sites in the UK, and in 2001, these sites produced a quarter of the UK’s emissions of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas.


What a lot of rubbish

Most of the rubbish in Britain is sent for landfill or incineration. Because more and more waste is being produced, landfill space is running out. Both landfill and incineration causes environmental damage (although modern incinerators are much improved on those of the past).

The amount of rubbish we throw away is increasing for a number of reasons:

  • new packaging materials and technology are being developed
  • lifestyle changes, for example a greater reliance on convenience/fast food
  • increasing affluence, leading to greater consumption of goods 
  • increasing population

Today’s waste compared to pre-1960s waste contains more products that don’t break down when they’re put in the ground. Packaging waste makes up about a quarter of all the waste you put in your bin; most of this could be recycled.

Here at Imperial College London we are improving our facilities to make it easier to recycle domestic items. We are also streamlining and expanding our other recycling arrangements to incorporate further waste streams.

The 3 Rs: Reduce – Re-use – Recycle

The Three R’s represents the ‘Waste Hierarchy’, which lists the best ways of managing waste from the most to the least desirable. It is a central theme of the European Union waste policy.


Not producing waste in the first place is the obvious solution and we can all play a part by thinking about how and why we produce waste. There are many examples of how you can reduce waste:

  • When shopping, choose products that have little or no packaging
  • Avoid throwaway items such as disposable cups, cutlery, cameras and batteries etc
  • Mend broken appliances instead of replacing them


Many of the things we currently throw away could be reused again and again with just a little thought and imagination. Examples are:

  • Pass on magazines and books to friends, hospitals and others
  • Give unwanted clothing, furniture and household goods to charitable organisations
  • Buy a battery charger and re-charge and re-use batteries


Turns materials that would otherwise become waste into valuable resources and generates a host of environmental, financial and social benefits. After collection, materials such as glass, metal, plastics and paper are separated and reprocessed into the raw materials they came from.

The Ultimate Recycling List

A complete list of what can and cannot be recycled on campus.


Paper and Books


  • all office paper
  • white paper
  • colored paper
  • newspaper (bags and strings removed)
  • magazines (all types)
  • catalogs (all types)
  • phonebooks (all types)
  • junk mail
  • paperboard
  • tissue boxes
  • heavy weight folders
  • paper towel and toilet paper rolls
  • food packaging (unwaxed only please)
  • shredded paper (in plastic bag to minimize blow-away potential)
  • paper milk, juice and soy milk cartons (should be empty)
  • books: all soft cover, hard covers should be ripped off
  • empty paper coffee cups (plastic lids removed)


  • napkins
  • tissue paper
  • paper towels
  • wax paper
  • wrapping paper
  • any paper product which has the potential to be contaminated with bodily fluids

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:kid’s today They really are growing up fast: 

  • Calls for initiatives to ensure that children’s outdoor play and connection to nature are encouraged
  • All forms of marketing directed at children up to at least age seven ‘should be banned’


Children are growing up too quickly because of modern life. Picture posed by modelsChildren are growing up too quickly because of modern life. Picture posed by models

Children are growing up too quickly because of a combination of early testing in school, advertising, bad childcare and a reliance on computer games and television, experts warned today.

A group of 200 teachers, academics, authors, charity leaders and other experts have written a letter calling for a drive to ‘interrupt the erosion of childhood’.

The group includes novelist Philip Pullman, Oxford University neuroscientist Baroness Susan Greenfield, and Lord Layard, emeritus professor of economics at the London School of Economics.

They write: ‘Our children are subjected to increasing commercial pressures, they begin formal education earlier than the European norm, and they spend ever more time indoors with screen-based technology, rather than in outdoor activity.

‘The time has come to move from awareness to action.’

The letter outlines a four-point programme to restore proper values to childhood.

It says: ‘We call on all organisations and individuals concerned about the erosion of childhood to come together to achieve the following: public information campaigns about children’s developmental needs, what constitutes “quality childcare”, and the dangers of a consumerist screen-based life-style; the establishment of a genuinely play-based curriculum in nurseries and primary schools up to the age of six, free from the downward pressure of formal learning, tests and targets.’

It also called for initiatives to ensure that children’s outdoor play and connection to nature are encouraged and the banning of all forms of marketing directed at children up to at least age seven.

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