DCU on track for 2014 Green Flag award

DCU is on target to be awarded a Green Flag in 2014. The Green Committee recently held their first meeting of the year, which focused on planning around the An Taisce Green Campus programme.

In the meeting organised by Students’ Union Welfare Officer Lorna Finnegan, the committee discussed the environmental and sustainability projects that will be undertaken with a view towards achieving a Green Flag.

One project in the pipeline is the “Switch Off” campaign, targeting students living alone for the first time. “Most students are guilty of leaving lights switched on when they leave the house or phone chargers plugged in overnight,” said Finnegan. “Switching off will reduce students’ carbon footprints as well as bringing down their bills.”

Caffeine-craving students will be happy to hear that cheaper tea and coffee will be available for those using their own mugs, in order to promote the use of travel cups and cut down on waste. There will also be more water fountains installed around the campus.

Another initiative will be the development of DCU’s community garden; the Green Committee are looking for ways to improve the garden which is located behind the library.

“I think this is a campaign that students will definitely get involved in,” said Finnegan. “I’m always being approached by students with an interest in environmental issues asking why there aren’t more recycling facilities on campus. What they don’t realise it that clear bin bags are used in classrooms and hallways so that waste can be separated afterwards.

“I think it’s important that the SU raises awareness around how much is already going on in DCU as well as increasing participation. It’s a great campaign because students don’t have to go out of their way to get involved. By just switching off a light when they leave a room they are playing their part.”

The Green Committee has been working on the Green Flag initiative since March 2012.

Sarah Curran

Image Credit: Annemarie Kelly

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