Earth Day 2023 takes place on 22 April, and is a day for people from all backgrounds to come together to advance sustainability and climate action.
We’re taking a look in how the University of Hull has been involved in some of the themes of this year’s Earth Day…
Hull-based company Rainbow Professional is a leading manufacturer of forestry and horticultural products. This may seem like a very green business, but they wanted to take their sustainability to the next level by finding an alternative to plastic tree guards, which protect saplings from animals and herbicides. They got in touch with the Aura Innovation Centre to see if we could help them in their mission to develop innovative, 100% plant-based polymer tree guards. We brought them together with the University of Hull’s researchers who are experts in materials analysis to study how Rainbow’s tree guards would break down. They confirmed the tree guards were sustainable, non-toxic, and can even be used as compost once they’ve broken down. Rainbow now sell their Bio Spiral Tree Guards to the forestry industry worldwide.
Reduce plastic consumption
Unless we take radical action, there’ll be more plastic than fish in our oceans by 2050. The University of Hull’s Plastics Collaboratory is a diverse team of academics combining a wide range of expertise, from politics to physics, environmental sciences to engineering. Led by the Energy and Environment Institute, they aim to understand the pathways and interactions of plastics in the environment, helping drive the direction of future plastic related research.
Participate in advocacy
It’s important that everyone works together to encourage others to care for our planet. The University of Hull is one of the founder members of the Oh Yes! Net Zero campaign, which aims to share best practice between organisations to make Hull a net zero city.
University of Hull Masters student Mia Porter explored customer perceptions towards environmental marketing in the fashion industry. She found that although consumers want to become more sustainable, their actions often fall short of their intentions – they say that sustainability is important to them, but it’s unlikely to alter their buying behaviour.
Invest in our planet
The main theme of this year’s Earth Day is investing in our planet. It highlights the importance of dedicating our time, resources and efforts to solving climate change.
If your business wants to invest more in its sustainability, take a look at some case studies of projects we’ve worked on with local companies – hopefully they’ll provide you with some inspiration for your own low-carbon journey.
And if you’re feeling like you don’t know where to start with making your SME more sustainable, take a look at our Net Zero Journey – a roadmap to take you from being new to net zero, to being a trailblazer who can help others on the road.