Scheme to reduce use of takeaway cups on campus

The University’s Sustainability Office has worked with the student club Plastic Diet to introduce a new cup recycling scheme to the University.

Earlier this year Plastic Diet set up Waste Watchers, which provides reusable cups for hot drinks from the University’s outlets. Student volunteers then washed the cups and returned them for reuse.

Sustainability director Andrew Wilks says they looked at a number of potential cup recycling schemes, consulted students involved in a range of sustainability groups around campus and decided the Waste Watcher concept was the simplest and most effective.

The office has now purchased more cups and has made arrangements with VicBooks and Louis’ Cafe on the Kelburn campus, to take the cups. The cafes will also wash them and return them to containers marked Boomerang.

“You can get a drink in a Boomerang cup and either return it immediately to a container in the Hub, or return it later when it suits,” Mr Wilks says. “It’s a really good initiative that was started by students and we have partnered with them to enable it to operate on a larger scale. We are really pleased that two outlets have come on board and we hope that others will follow.”