School of Psychology About us


What are we aiming for?

The School and the wider University are committed to reducing the environmental impacts of our activities and promoting sustainability. Our School Environmental Objectives include:

  • Reducing the use of paper for printing and photocopying
  • Increasing recycling throughout the School
  • Reducing waste
  • Reducing packaging coming into the University
  • Implementing the University Travel Plan
  • Promoting staff and student volunteering
  • Improving communication on environmental issues and actions.

We can only achieve these objectives with support from staff and students. Below are details of initiatives and facilities to reduce the School’s environmental impact; and advice on actions staff and students can take.

The School PSYCH IT Services Group have discovered that EOS recycle print toner cartridges for Konica machines for free, and have been using this system successfully for a few weeks now (along with XMA who recycle all other printer cartridges, e.g., HP, in the School). This information has been shared with others in the university to encourage others to recycle their toner cartridges.  This is another great example of work going on in the School to reduce our environmental impact. Read the flow chart here.

How are we doing?

Through a range of initiatives, including the Green Impact scheme, we have made significant progress towards achieving our objectives.

"A group of enthusiastic PhD students has been busy developing a courtyard garden to encourage biodiversity and provide a place for Psychology students and staff to relax. Thanks to the hard work of Robert Sposato, Catherine Cherry, Sam Hubble, and others in the Understanding Risk group, as well as donations and advice from Val Snelgrove, we now have some dedicated outside space for composting and potting, as well as just relaxing. The facilities include a bench, potting table, wormery, various pots/bedding and plants, and regular visitors to the bird feeders. All materials were reclaimed/freecycled, donated by staff, or hand-built (by Robert) - so an incredible achievement for no cost to the School at all!”

For example:

Reducing waste:

  • We now use electronic marking for almost all student coursework and have paper-minimal meetings.
  • We also have the FollowMe printing system, which ensures we only print what we really need.
  • Our paper is Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified, which means it comes from sustainable resources.
  • Recycling bins are available throughout the School. The following items can be recycled:
  • Office paper
  • Newspapers
  • Magazines
  • Brochures - remove wrapping
  • Books - remove hardback covers / spiral binding
  • Junk Mail
  • Envelopes - including window envelopes
  • Cardboard - please flatten boxes
  • Plastic bottles - with / without lids
  • Plastic containers - rinsed, without lids
  • Plastic carrier bags
  • Cellophane and shrink wrap
  • Empty drinks cans and food tins - rinsed
  • Yellow pages


  • The School provides covered cycle racks (behind the Tower Building), and showering facilities (on Level 3) to encourage staff and students to cycle.
  • Videoconferencing facilities are available in the Railway Room (51 Park Place) or from your desktop. Other online resources to facilitate use of alternatives to travel include Skype and Google Hangout.


  • Staff inductions, and these web pages, include information about School environmental policies and facilities, and advice on environmental actions staff can take.
  • You can also get in touch with the School’s Environmental Compliance Officer (ECO) for advice or suggestions for further ways we can reduce our environmental impact.
  • The School is provided with monthly reports of energy and water use within the Tower Building, which are made available here.

What can you do?

Tips on how to save energy and resources include:


Cardiff University was awarded Fairtrade status in June 2007. Fairtrade status is awarded by the Fairtrade Foundation, a charity committed to providing disadvantaged producers in the developing world with a better deal for their products. Fairtrade products are available in both Cardiff University catering/bars outlets and the Students’ union catering/shop outlets.  Many students/staff already purchase Fairtrade products and everyone has to part to play in maintaining the University’s Fairtrade status. To achieve Fairtrade status, as defined by the Fairtrade Foundation, the University commits to the 5 goals as laid down by the Foundation:

  1. Fairtrade foods will be made available for sale in all campus shops and used in all cafés/ restaurants/ bars on campus. Where this is not possible, there is a commitment to begin to use Fairtrade foods in these establishments as soon as it becomes possible to do so.
  2. Fairtrade foods (for example, coffee and tea) will be served at all meetings hosted by the university and the Students’ Union. In addition, unofficial meetings are encouraged to use Fairtrade foods wherever possible.
  3. The process of achieving and maintaining Fairtrade status will be co-ordinated by a Fairtrade Taskforce that will include representatives from the University, the Students’ Union and students. This group will oversee the ongoing implementation of an action plan to maintain the Fairtrade status for the University.
  4. The Fairtrade Taskforce will organise the publicity for Fairtrade fortnight and other promotions of Fairtrade products on an ongoing basis to ensure awareness-raising is maintained.
  5. The Fairtrade Taskforce will send a yearly report on 'Fairtrade in the University/Students’ Union' to Student Council and University Board to be forwarded to the Fairtrade Foundation in fulfilment of the requirement for achieving Fairtrade status.
Environment Officer:

Environment objectives

A tour of Cathays Park

Current energy and water use

University policies:

As part of its commitment to sustainability, the University’s Carbon Management Plan and Energy, Water and Waste Management Policy aim to minimise expenditure and environmental impact while maintaining health and safety standards and an acceptable comfort level for building users.  Within these strategies, the University commits to investing in energy, water and waste efficiency, advising on technological options for carbon reduction, considering environmental impacts within purchasing decisions (including supporting Fairtrade), monitoring and raising awareness of resource use, and meeting legal requirements for buildings, emissions and waste.

The University’s Travel Plan aims to reduce environmental impacts associated with commuting and business travel. Resources to support this include a car share scheme, cycle purchase scheme, walking maps, and advice on public transport and carbon offsetting

Travel - Cardiff University Lift Share Scheme

CU’s lift share scheme is a free and private scheme available to all CU staff and students, allowing you to find people to share your car, walking or cycling journey.
By sharing your car journey, you will be:

  • Benefitting from the convenience of travelling by car
  • Saving money by reducing mileage and petrol costs
  • Alleviating parking problems, congestion and pollution

If you would like to save some money by sharing your travel costs, or perhaps find companions to walk or cycle with, join today.

SAVE ENERGY by wearing appropriate clothing

It is good practice to wear warm clothing in the winter rather than wearing summer clothing and turning the heating up. If you would like to see the carbon/financial cost of running a personal heater, please use the Carbon Trust Calculator.


Lighting – Office Lights left on overnight use enough energy in a year to heat a home for almost 5 months – Switch them off and you’ll make all the difference.

Heating – A 2°C increase in office temperature creates enough CO2 in a year to fill a hot air balloon – Reduce it and you’ll make a difference.

Computer – A computer left on overnight for a year creates enough CO2 to fill a double-decker bus – Switch it off and you’ll make all the difference.

Photocopier – A photocopier left on standby overnight waste enough energy to make 30 cups of tea – Switch it off and you’ll make all the difference.

Air Conditioning – Air conditioning an office for 1 extra hour a day uses enough energy in a month to power a TV for over a year – Turn it off overnight and you’ll make all the difference.