12 Zero-Waste and Sustainability Tips for Nottingham Students

🍀A big Shop Zero welcome to all students coming to Nottingham!

This blog post is based on the zero-waste and sustainability experiences of Bianca who works at Shop Zero – 2020 and during the COVID pandemic!

Hi, I’m Bianca. I’ve just graduated from Nottingham Trent University and I’m here to give you my official Student Guide to Zero-Waste in Nottingham!

If you are new to the City and want to pursue a sustainable way of living, then read on.

Personal note:

When I first arrived in the UK from Romania, I was shocked by the amount of plastic used in supermarkets. Especially over the excessive packaging of the fruits and veggies. I `officially` joined the zero-waste movement at the beginning of my second year as a student at Nottingham Trent University. This was when I purchased my first reusable water bottle, reusable coffee cup and a set of reusable steel straws. I remember looking for environmental shops in Nottingham and I stumbled over a Zero-Waste pop-up event on Facebook. It was run by Sarah the owner of Shop Zero. Who would have known that I would end up volunteering and then working with Sarah? I call it destiny!

🌿 Living sustainably in Nottingham

1. Nottingham pledged to become the first Carbon Neutral city in the UK by 2028.

August 2020 saw a month filled with sustainable, educational activities and challenges as a way to support this move. (You can check out all the challenges on our CN28 Highlights on Instagram) and visit Carbon Neutral Nottingham for more info.

2. Use the public transportation system

We are lucky to have a great bus and tram service in Nottingham. Nottingham City Transport is one of the most environmentally friendly bus fleets in the country. They run on biofuel. They also have student travel offers available.

3. Find a student community

You can join zero-waste, sustainable and other societies at your University. Or, you can start your own! There are some great ZW groups on FB as well.💚

4. Have a zero-waste starter kit

Get yourself a reusable water bottle, fabric shopping and produce bags, reusable cup for take-away coffee/tea (you get discounts by using your own cup). Then you can move to make small changes in everyday habits like swapping for a bamboo toothbrush.

5. Reusable fabric face coverings

The pandemic brought a new wave of single-use plastics and single-use masks are found everywhere from the city to the lakes and ocean. Switching to a reusable one is recommended as you also take care of the environment. You can hand wash or machine wash the fabric face coverings and you are good to go.

6. Refillables

Reuse your detergent and food containers by bringing them to a zero-waste shop and checking their options. Remember, It’s not all about pretty packaging.

7. Buy in bulk

Due to these challenging times, it may be a good idea to buy in bulk. Especially if you do not feel safe leaving the house. At Shop Zero we offer delivery and postal services too.

8. Shop in charity shops

Depending on the area of the City in which you live, you should find a few second-hand shops. The city centre has White Rose, Oxfam and many more that you can browse through. You never know what gems you might find!

9. Fresh veggies/fruits/pastries

🍒🍎 – again, depending on where you live, you might find local shops with plastic-free fresh items, often cheaper than those found in chain supermarkets.

10. Go electronic with your notes and coursework

Use the library to the fullest by borrowing books and laptop devices. Or you can also invest in a good-quality tablet or laptop that is meant to last you a long time.

11. Get wise about your recycling and waste disposal options

Check local guidelines for waste disposal and discuss with your flatmates about the system. Remember, not everything that goes into the recycling bin will actually be recycled. ♻️ Try to follow some of the 7r rules: refuse, reduce, repurpose, reuse, rot, repair, refill, and LASTLY recycle.

12. Come to Shop Zero!

We give all students 10% off EVERYTHING ALL year-round when you show your student ID in the shop! Moreover, if you get one of our 10for10 loyalty cards (minimum purchase amount is £5 per order), on your 10th transaction you get further money off!

🌿 ‼️*Special October offer for students!*‼️ You get a free bamboo straw with your first purchase when spending £5 and above + a stamp on your loyalty card. Offer valid while stock lasts!

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