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BPS News

Plastic not so fantastic

12 July 2018

ISS, the Society’s facilities provider at both its Leicester and London offices, have switched to eco-friendly Vegware for all their disposables.

The water cups used at Society offices are now made from plants and once our stock of coffee cups have been used, these will also be from Vegware, along with the cutlery.

The caterer used by the London office have also confirmed that they have now sourced compostable and eco-friendly disposable items and they will switch their entire disposable range this summer as they use up their current stock.  In the meantime they are collecting their used disposables, as these are being recycled through their own recycling company.

Julie Freeborn, Chair of the Division of Occupation Psychology, said:

'Protecting our environment has raised considerably in the public conscience, and it is so important that we do all we can to ensure that our planet and oceans do not suffer for our convenience. We all have a responsibility to take action where we can but being plastic-free is a challenge as anyone who has tried it for even a week will know. Even where recyclable material is used, it relies on individuals to take action, and there are many points in the process beyond our control where the plastic can escape into the environment.

I was inspired to ask BPS staff what was being done in the Society in relation to single-use plastics and was delighted to see the next issue of the Psychologist arrive in a compostable wrapping. Over time, this will lead to quite a significant reduction in production of plastic when you reflect on how many members there are. 

As I attend many meetings in the Society offices, I am pleased that the catering will now be plastic-free and I am grateful to the staff of the Society for being so responsive to my questions and suggestions. Again, this is not an inconsiderable change and I believe members will be reassured that work done to develop and support our profession will be done so with respect to our planet. I hope that this will be part of a growing change in consumer demand for eco-friendly solutions.'

The Leicester office is looking to move to eco-friendly catering disposables in the near future.

The Society’s Director of Corporate Services, Mike Laffan, said:

‘We are committed to reducing the Society’s reliance on plastic and this, along with our recent move to a potato-starch, 100% compostable mailing bag for The Psychologist builds on our green credentials’

Dr Jan Maskell, Convenor of the DOP Going Green Working Party, said:

‘Moving away from plastic is a good move for the Society and is one of many actions we could and should be taking. Longer term it would be better to move to re-usable items rather than disposable products so that we no longer contribute to the waste stream.

The organisation is looking strategically at its environmental impact and the impact of climate change on the organisation. We cannot continue to use resources at our current rate. I am pleased to be working with the BPS on its Environmental Sustainability policy.'

Click here to read Jan Maskell’s blog ‘It’s not easy being green’ on the Society website.



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