Ethical and Environmental Policy (2008)
The Union Notes
- Scientists are warning that rising temperatures from global warming are damaging the fragile Arctic systems that wildlife and northern communities, such as the United Kingdom, rely on.
- As tropical forests contain at least half of the Earth’s species, the clearance of some 17 million hectares each year is causing a dramatic loss of biodiversity.
- We consume products that systematically pollute the environment and which use huge amounts of energy and create unnatural persistent substances such as toxins in the process. 25 per cent of the population consumes nearly 75 per cent of the world’s natural resources.
The Union Believes
- We cannot continue to consume resources in the same manner without seriously damaging the environment that supports us, as well as the existence of future generations.
- Positive solutions to the problems that we face do exist, in forms such as organic farming, renewable energy technology, Fair Trade, the rebirth of local communities, and sustainable transport plans, amongst others.
- The current political climate is not responding adequately to the challenge of sustainable levels of consumption and development to solve global problems of inequality, poverty, hunger, human rights abuses and environmental destruction.
- That the purchase of ethical and environmentally friendly products over their less ethical counterparts is the best way forward.
- As students, we are in an excellent position to promote positive solutions to the ecological challenges we face.
- As a Union we should set a firm and active approach to environmental and ethical procedures in order to lobby the Institution to do the same.
The Union Resolves
- To raise awareness amongst students of the issues of ethical finance and ethical career decisions.
- To ensure the Union is ethical in its decision-making process, in its day-to-day workings, and in its business relationships with organisations and its purchasing decisions and to lobby the University to do the same.
- To purchase all standard printing paper from recycled or renewable sources.
- To collect and collate all stamps from incoming mail and donate them to charity.
- To monitor the amount of printing and photocopying that is made per month and record the data.
- To ensure the Union either recycles all Printer cartridges or donates them to charities where applicable.
- To advertise and promote recycling and energy awareness to members of staff and sabbaticals in the Union.
- To write a plan on the lighting and equipment responsibility, which is reviewed on an annul basis.
- To ensure that new staff and sabbaticals are appropriately informed of the Environmental and Ethical policies and procedures outlined in this document.
- To ensure that the Union website is used to promote what the Union is doing to aid environmental issues and that it contains relevant information about how students can play their part.
- To address the Union’s long-term commitment to helping the Environmental in the strategic plan.
- To mandate the Vice President Media and Services to dedicate time to the ethical and environmental area of their job description.
- As part of the constitutional review the union will asses which sabbatical role should hold responsibility for ethical and environmental issues.
- To not allow the use of portable electric heaters and radiators within the Union.
- To continually strive to improve the environmental performance of the Union.
- That under no circumstances will domestic air travel be used as a form of transport by Union officers or staff when conducting Union business.
- To comply with all environmental legislation and to hold a record of the relevant legislation within the Union.
Proposed: Liam Preston (President)
Seconded: Natalie Slate (VP Welfare and Education)