Our Environmental Impact

Close up of leaves on a tree

We know our students care about the planet and we do too!


We've been doing lots behind the scenes to improve our environmental impact. We're taking part in the Students Organising for Sustainability's (SOS) Green Impact project. Some highlights from our project include... 


  •  SU Litter Pick
  •  Donations for the Hatfield Food Bank
  •  Adopting an Amazon Not By Default Policy
  •  Supporting our societies throughout 'Go Green Week'
  •  Improving the sustainability of our freebies (which we have loved seeing you rock!)
  •  Hosting our first Sustainable Market
  •  Rolling out our first ever bespoke sustainability research, hearing from you! Insights from the survey can be found below


You can download the survey report here


Students standing by their allotment Volunteering society posing during their litter pick Students posing at the Thrift Fashion Show


What does everyone mean by the Climate Crisis?!?

The climate crisis is defined as 'a situation characterised by the threat of highly dangerous, irreversible changes to the global climate'. Other related terms you may have heard of include global warming or climate change. These terms all widely refer to the breakdown of our natural environment due to human activity. We can see the climate crisis affecting our lives now through extreme weather events like flooding, crazy heat waves & storms

Our commitment to creating a greener environment

The Union is committed to ensuring we help create a safer and greener future for our current and future students. We have recently reviewed and published our Environmental and Ethical policy.

You can read this here.

How can I level up my sustainability efforts?
Sustainable Societies!
  • Join our sustainability focused society, the Green Herts Society
  • Our Enactus Society is a business society with sustainability at the heart of their work. Join them!
  • Start your own sustainable society! We would love to see things like a People & Planet Society, Slow Food Society or Vegetarian/Vegan Society here at Herts, or anything else you think would work. You can request to start a society here


Work with the uni's Sustainability team!

One of your graduate attributes is to be sustainability driven, which the Sustainability and Environment team can help you to achieve! They're always looking for Sustainability Advocates to help fight the fight by supporting with their events, representing the student voice and promoting sustainability at large. Find out more about how you can work with them here


Support the Local Community

Welwyn Hatfield Council are always looking out for community volunteers to help with things like litter picks! You can sign up to volunteer for initiatives like these here


Do Your Thing!
  • Want to run your own sustainability initiatives or events? Got a planet friendly idea you'd love to see come to life? Drop us an email on societies@hertssu.com and we'll do our best to help it become a reality

What's the deal with recycling?

We might put something into the recycling bins with the best of intentions, right? But if it can't be recycled, don't do it! If the recycling bin is contaminated with non-recyclables, it can mean whole lorries full of waste have to be disposed of. Make sure you're sure before you drop!


Can't Be Recycled

  •  Post it notes
  •  Starbucks coffee cups (these have a thin plastic lining)
  •  Used paper napkins & tissues (anything with liquids or grease on cannot be recycled)
  •  Receipts
  •  Sandwich packets
  •  Food waste


Can Be Recycled

  •  Aluminium cans (i.e. a can of Coke)
  •  Cardboard (but only once all sellotape is removed)
  •  Plastic bottles (but only if they state that they can be recycled)
Our Sustainable SMART Plan

We have identified some key areas on where we improve our sustainable goals.

You can read this here.

Our Top 5 Environmental Impacts

Hertfordshire Students’ Union is committed to improving its carbon footprint. As a result, we have investigated our top 5 negative environmental impacts, and created a plan for reducing these impacts over the next 12 months.

Impact Measurement Actions to Reduce
Single use plastic (freebies) in our nightclub This means an approximate 493KG of plastic in landfill. Orders this academic year include 445kg of glow batons and 48g of glowsticks Using more sustainable freebies such as socks, hats, bags & reusable coffee cups
Driving between campuses Approximately 62KM are driven between the de Havilland Campus and College Lane Campus per month, emitting around 2.46 tonnes of carbon per year Ensuring that the de Havilland Campus is well stocked with items that can be easily stored. For example: scanners, games & decorations. Carpooling these journeys rather than individually driving
Printing Approximately 473 sheets of paper are printed per month which uses around 600 gallons of water per year Swapping out leaflets and posters for individual QR codes. Purchased NFC cards to reduce the need to print and instead distribute information digitally
Deliveries Using the distance from the Students’ Union to the local ParcelForce and frequency of deliveries, we estimate our deliveries emit 5.796 tonnes of carbon per year Where possible we collate our deliveries to arrive together. We are bulk buying regular purchases to reduce the number of deliveries
Banking We currently business bank with Santander who invest in fossil fuel companies. Our Finance team are researching the possibility of moving banks to a more ethical bank


Staff posing at their litter pick Students posing on the Thrift Runway Society members posing at one of their events