Tag Archives: UC Sustainability Office

Sustainability – But At Home

What has the Sustainability Office been getting up to over the lockdown? Apart from wishing we were in Waiutuutu Community Garden of course…

Sustainability at Home intro post

We’ve been running weekly challenges with  community, to share your tips and tricks for living a sustainable life – but from home! We’ve had a heap of fun and learnt a lot from one another along the way. We’d like to share our favourite learnings with the rest of UC in the hope it’ll inspire some of you to do the same.

Want to make Feijoa Fizz from leftover fruit peels? Learn to make homemade Apple Cider Vinegar? Go on a virtual garden tour and learn how to dry herbs? Try a DIY makeup remover? Learn how to shop second hand like a pro (and on a student budget)? Or maybe you’re after some book recommendations? Read on, and let our wonderful sustainable students and staff show you how they’ve been living a little lighter these past few weeks.

Week One: Low Waste Life @ Home! For Week One, we asked our community to share with us how they’ve been reducing their waste footprint at home. Here’s some of our favourite low waste life hacks! For the full run down and more details, see our Week one blog here.

WEEK ONE

Heather sewing her own produce bags

Lizzy made DIY sugar wax and up-cycled old towels into cleaning rags 

Nic blew us away by transforming her family’s neglected compost bin into a thing of wonder (complete with a diagram for the fridge!)

Helena showed us to make Apple Cider Vinegar with leftover apple cores – genius (and cheap!)

Week Two: Sustainable Recipes @ Home! We noticed that in Week One, we received a lot of amazing low waste recipes – and we wanted to learn more! So, for Week Two, we asked our community to share with us their favourite Sustainable Recipes. Enjoy (and we dare you not to feel hungry). For the full recipe lists and photos, see Week Two’s blog here. It’s definitely worth checking out for some serious cooking and creating inspiration!

WEEK TWO

Imogen made jam from the previously mysterious Strawberry Tree! (Her recipe also featured in the recent Environment issue of Canta Magazine)

Holly Feijoa Fizz

Holly made Feijoa Fizz from leftover fruit peels – YUM!

Abby made homemade bagels and topped them with vegan pesto made from Waiutuutu  garden greens!

Helena made a Rosemary Hair Rinse from foraged Rosemary 

Week Three: Iso Garden Tours! For Week Three, we moved our challenge outdoors and asked our community to take us on a Virtual Garden Tour! We had so much fun, and really did feel like we’d visited your place for a cup of tea. To be taken on the same experience, check out Week Three’s blog here!

Iso Garden Tours Week Three

Chantelle showed us around her family’s garden – we loved meeting her dad’s worms!

A peak into Fiona’s dreamy outdoor bath and toilet area on her family’s permaculture farm 

Jessica Gosling 2

Jessica showed us her epic Iso Garden Transformation (+ a great pesto recipe)

And we got to see where Lucy has been spending her time in lockdown, plus meet Kimchi the cat!

Week Four: Join the Fashion Revolution! Week Four fell during the global Fashion Revolution Week, and we celebrated by asking our community to share with us how they are taking part. This week we wanted to see how our students and staff were supporting slow, ethical, second hand and fair fashion – and boy they did not disappoint. For the full run down, see Week Four’s blog here.

Week Four Fashion Revolution -2

Ella blew us away with her handmade creations over lockdown: she made a winter coat from a old paint mat, shoes from an old handbag and shoelaces, and taught herself to knit a singlet!

Ngaire and Nuha showing us how to rock second hand clothes like a boss!

Imogen showing us her upcycled threads, and her top and shorts she made from bedsheets and tablecloths!

Naomi

Naomi hand quilted this beautiful jacket during lockdown

Week Five: Reflections! For our final challenge, we asked our community to take a step back and reflect on their lockdown learnings over the past weeks. For the full stories, see our Week Five blog here.

Week 5 reflect

Varvara shared some beautiful words and her favourite poem that has resonated with her during this time

Plus, some great lockdown reading recommendations!

And Eleanor shared this beautiful video – it’ll give you goosebumps!

Hopefully these tips and tricks from our wonderful UC students and staff will give you a little inspiration and even a new challenge as we face this next chapter. Are you keen to try any of these recipes or ideas? Let us know in the comments below. We’re off to make Holly’s Feijoa Fizz!

Thanks for coming on this journey with us.

Arohanui,

Tari Toitū te Taiao | UC Sustainability Office

This message was brought to you by the UC Sustainability Office. Stay connected and follow us on FacebookInstagram or sign up to our newsletter to stay in the loop about campus sustainability.

Free Breakfast for Cyclists: BYO Cup!

It’s the event worth getting out of bed (and onto your bike) for… the Bike Breakfast is back next Monday 23 March from 8am – 10am at the Beatrice Tinsley Bike Park!This year your reward for biking to UC is coming in the form of vegan danishes, banana smoothies and fair trade coffee… and it’s all for FREE! All you need to do is ride to UC, park up your bike in the snazzy new bike stands (or, show us your helmet if you parked up elsewhere) and we’ll reward you with breakfast on us.

Please note: There will be no single use cups at this event and the Cup Library won’t be available so please bring along your own coffee cup. UC is following advice from WHO and Ministry of Health regarding all upcoming events, read more>

What else can you expect?

On the spot bike repairs thanks to Dr Bike, cycling chat and information about the city cycleways thanks to the wonderful Anne from the Christchurch City Council, and more cycling banter than you’ve ever seen before…

Did we mention there’s FREE breakfast on the line?!

See you, your bikes and your coffee cups next Monday 23 March in Beatrice Tinsley Bike Park.

For more information, see the Facebook event here.

This message was brought to you by the UC Sustainability Office. Stay connected and follow us on FacebookInstagram or sign up to our newsletter to stay in the loop about campus sustainability.

Got a question or want to know more? Email us at sustainability@canterbury.ac.nz

Greening UC Challenge winners

The Greening UC Challenge was the first two-day challenge in the UCE Disrupt series for 2020.


Participants were asked to transport themselves to 2030 and design a venture that will help UC transition to being carbon net neutral, with the potential to be used in other universities and businesses in New Zealand and beyond.


More than fifty challenge participants came from a huge variety of backgrounds, from first year to postgraduate students, studying everything from education to engineering and economics to environmental science. Teams were randomly formed to allow for a multi-disciplinary approach, with each team’s range of expertise helping to produce creative solutions. 

The challenge involved two busy days of idea generation, speed mentoring, and pitching at the showcase, all fueled by sustainable and delicious food. At the end of the challenge, each team presented to a judging panel made up of Tony Sellin, Energy Manager at UC, Michaela Balzarova, a UC Associate Professor with an interest in business sustainability, and Jill Borland, Impact & Change Strategist at Enable Change.

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First prize was awarded to the Lean Mean Grean Team, consisting of  Nadhirah Hisham, Patricia Coutts, Savannah Egerton, Samuel Sheung, and Charlie Barker. Their idea was to establish a pyrolosis plant at UC which could thermo-chemically decompose any organic or carbon-based material, such as food waste, plastic and paper into biofuels. It would provide ample research opportunities for the university as well as a potential income source, as excess fuel that is generated can be sold.

Second place went to team Kayam, made up of Maliha Gangat, Alex Manikam, Yutika Rangari, Catherine Hattaway and Amelia McLuskie. Kayam impressed the judges with their solar paint concept, which involved painting buildings around UC with bright solar paint which generates electricity like solar panels. The team made a convincing argument for their paint idea over traditional solar panels, as it will be cheaper to implement, and would make the UC campus more attractive.

Team Baby Fish took home third place with their carbon offset solution. The team was made up of Jessica Goodall, Josef Power, Kayla Drummy, Hamish Winstone and Kíra Lancz. They proposed a new approach to carbon offsetting, using a crowdfunding-style model. To offset the carbon emissions created by travel or other university activities, money is paid into a fund that goes towards supporting local offset activities, such as Student Volunteer Army tree-planting and other community projects.

Other solutions included plantings on roofs of UC buildings to offset carbon and reduce energy use, fitness equipment for the UC RecCentre that converts people’s efforts into electricity and educates people on energy use while they work out, and an on-site compost plant for compostable food packaging.