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UCC Library Green Energy: Ditch the Disposable

Information on UCC Library's Green Energy Campaign.

The Scourge of the Disposable

There is no denying the global move against the use of disposables.

  • It is estimated that 200 million disposable coffee cups are used in Ireland each year. 
  • Only 9% of all plastic ever produced has been recycled.  

In line with UCC's aims to minimise the use of unnecessary single-use items on campus, from September 2017, UCC staff and students are no longer permitted to take disposable coffee cups into the library. 

One of the  biggest sources of contamination in our waste was liquid from unfinished coffee cups, which meant that bags labelled for recycling had to go to general waste.

Ditch the Disposable

We imposed a complete ban on disposable coffee cups in the library.  The severity of this move was mitigated somewhat by offering reusable bamboo mugs and negotiating a discount for the use of these mugs at all campus coffee outlets.
green bamboo reusable cup with UCC logo

We asked students to pledge their support for the new system and over 1,000 signed up in the first hour.

We have given away a limited number of sustainably sourced bamboo coffee cups.


Since the coffee cup ban was introduced the Students' Union has secured funding from Cork City Council and the Southern Region Waste Management Office to give every incoming First Year student a reusable cup at orientation.

Signage

 Strategically Placed Signage both inside and outside the library encourage people to use disposable cups