Three changes students can make to save the planet

Is your inner Greta wincing at your housemates’ failed recycling efforts? Do you want to make a conscious effort to do more to save the planet? We’ve three easy changes you can make today to become more environmentally friendly. 

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Recycle… properly

Ever lived in a house-share with someone who is a steadfast recycler, only doesn’t bother to wash out their recycling beforehand? Not only does this entirely negate their recycling efforts – after all, recycling centres can seldom use recycled materials that haven’t been cleaned beforehand  – it can lead to an infestation of  ants, flies and worse still, maggots. Yuck. 

Recycle your cans, glass, (recyclable) plastic and paper by all means, but keep it hygienic. Wash and dry anything grubby out before you pop it in the recycling bin. It only takes a couple of minutes and it’s probably one of the best things you can do for the planet. 


Ditch the clingfilm and other single-use plastic

Clingfilm is soooo last decade – and for good reason; single-use plastic that you find in everyday household items like carrier bags and, yes, clingfilm, is filling up our landfills and our oceans at an alarming rate. 

But how do you keep your leftovers fridge-fresh and made-at-home sarnies transportable? 

A great alternative to clingfilm is beeswax material squares – and you can even make them yourself. Here’s how:

  1. Simply cut up some funky cotton material into different-sized squares and lay it on baking parchment on a baking tray. 
  2. Next, cover the squares with wax – beeswax, or soy wax are ideal – and cover with another sheet of baking parchment. 
  3. Bung it in the oven for 5 or so minutes, or until the wax has melted over the squares. 
  4. Leave to cool and air-dry and there you have it: homemade beeswax covers. 


Eliminate food waste

Answer honestly: how much food do you and your housemates chuck away each week? We get it. Student life is busy. That said, with a little ingenuity you can make use of everything in your fridge and cupboards – even that weird jar of quince jelly your housemate brought back after Christmas.  

Some student tenants we know have a weekly potluck which uses up all of the leftovers and past-its-best-but-still-edible food in their fridge. For some inspiration, Google recipes for your ingredients – you’ll be surprised at how much of it goes together.  Love Food Hate Waste has a great recipe resource. Leftovers breakfast burrito anyone? 


Recap: Three changes students can make to help the planet

  • Recycle properly – wash and dry everything before it goes in the recycling bin. 
  • Avoid single-use plastic – that’s clingfilm, carrier bags and ziploc freezer bags. 
  • Eliminate food waste – get creative with your meal ideas to put everything to good use. 


For more advice on finding your new student home, get in touch with the Student Places crew today.

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