Ban the use of all disposable cups from all venues across campus. Instead use 'in-house' crockery and have re-usable cups for sale.

Extra Information: Some people are using their own cups but this is still by far the minority and a huge amount of disposables are being unnecessarily manufactured, bought and disposed of. A shift away from disposables will not happen unless it is fully implemented. This has been successfully carried in coffee shop chains such as Boston Tea Party where the clientele have quickly adapted and not using disposables is now the norm. To be a 'disposable cup - free' Campus at the start of the 2021 academic year would be a leading step for UWE which prides itself for it's sustainability focus, in Bristol - the Green Capital. This isn't a complicated or risk-associated policy to bring in and there's no excuse for the university to be waiting for others to do it first.

Actions Taken

  • This idea opened on 11 January 2021 and closed for voting on 4 February 2021.
  • This Idea has passed. The SU will begin work on making this Idea a reality as soon as possible.


William Cox
12:25pm on 3 Feb 21 Great idea. Most people on my course have a reusable one or use in house crockery.
Josephine Adams
11:01am on 3 Feb 21 Jonathan have you come across collapsible Stojo cups? - I have one in my pocket most days, super easy and doesn't take up much space at all. Adam, takeaway coffee will still be available under this policy. Customers bring their own cups (as above). Do check out Boston Tea Party in Bristol if you can: it's as a great example of a thriving cafe chain who have implemented a no-disposables policy. I believe it wouldn't kill the business at all, many people are willing to adjust their habits in the face of more sustainable systems.
Adam Griffiths
2:11am on 3 Feb 21 terrible idea. free market always wins. if you ban single use plastic and therefore takeaway coffee cups you'll just ruin the business on campus. congratulations. focus on something more significant.
Jonathan Creffield
9:29pm on 2 Feb 21 I do not think this is a good idea. Many students need a drink on the go. Carrying a reusable cup all the time is difficult if you're travelling from work to the campus. I'd prefer disposable but environmentally-friendly cups.
Kimberley Mitchell
3:58pm on 2 Feb 21 With Covid-19 in particular, in-house crockery may be a bad way to go. Many students are also likely to get a coffee on-the-go so in-house crockery may be significantly inconvenient for the purpose. Although having reusable cups for purchase could be nice, sometimes people already have these but forget them at home and wouldn't want to have to spend additional money on products they don't need every time they do (this wouldn't be environmentally or economically friendly). Additionally, many students simply cannot afford to pay for reusable cups as well as their food or drink, but still need something to eat/drink. Would disposable recyclable cups/packaging (i.e. card) in addition to reusable options available for purchase not be a better resolve/option? As there are loads of easy-access recycling points on campus and this would cater to the aforementioned needs, yet can be produced cheaply, reduce plastics, and the option to buy reusable ones would be there for those able or wanting to do so too.
Josephine Adams
12:36pm on 2 Feb 21 Thanks Cameron, you've summarised my points and arguments for this well. And in answer to Maddison re plastic straws (I do understand!) - there's no reason why this policy should have any impact on the specific offering of plastic straws for those who need them. On top of this, metal reusable straws are also starting to take off and be sold in cafes, but I guess that's for the next student idea...
Cameron Townsley
8:51am on 2 Feb 21 Totally support this. To those who think they’ll be affected because they forgot a coffee cup one time and had to go without a coffee, is that really the end of the world? The likelihood is that if you rely on coffee to get you through the day then you can remember your reusable cup and equally if you’re consuming that many disposable cups then really you’re the issue. The only alternative I can thing of is to charge something ridiculous like 50p or £1 for a disposable cup and then donating that money to a charity to plants trees (the eden project have one). Also, just biodegrada materials still requires resources and water to make, just to be thrown away ??
Maddison Skinner
11:14pm on 1 Feb 21 Banning Single-Use Cups might be an idea, so long as it doesn't hinder disabled folks access to single-use plastic straws. We need them, as alternatives are not suitable for some disabilities.
Rita Kiraly
6:57pm on 1 Feb 21 A viable incentive could be to give a discount to those who bring their own cup or charge for the disposable ones (and make it clear WHY). Motivation could be money, but also other perks, for instance, I was allowed to skip the line at my college to get hot water if I took my own mug with me.
Robert Moore
6:45pm on 1 Feb 21 Ok, so here's the thing.. It's cold outside and I really need a coffee to warm me up; I've just walked into the library building to do a spot of quick online stuff and haven't brought anything with me; it is 18:30, everything is closed. If you ban single use cups I can't have a coffee :( now before you say I should be more prepared, well I am normally, I have a bamboo cup and a set up bamboo cutlery that I carry in my rucksack; but at this moment I don't have my rucksack. Now my point is although a strong agree that we should minimise single use cups, I don't think we should ban them. As a point of information single use cups can be made from compostable material, such as coconut or coffee bean husk and this would make an eco option for when a single use is required. I support education to benefits of multi use environmentally friendly cups but urge a non-totalitarian approach :)
Madeleine Anderson
5:46pm on 1 Feb 21 This is a no brainer. Delivering in Covid secure way is possible. See earlier comment 're how to do safely:
Jorji Longdon
4:37pm on 1 Feb 21 Ban single use plastics and look at radical reduction of all other plastic materials and swap to cardboard, bamboo, wood, metal etc
Caitlyn Miles
4:26pm on 1 Feb 21 All we got to do is act consciously in our day to day life. yeah sure it takes a little bit of time to think of the impact of your actions but hey, at least our planet might last a little longer. i completely support this campaign.
Anna Ralph
2:03pm on 1 Feb 21 It may have already been mentioned but City To Sea have guide for safely using reusables during the pandemic.
Sayda Shejuti
1:57pm on 1 Feb 21 Since singe use plastics (SUPs) are posing increasing threat to our environment and health, this issue should be immediately addressed and actions like banning SUP from campus area should be taken. This is a timely initiative that I strongly support.
William Lawson
1:25pm on 1 Feb 21 I think maybe it could be helped by training people to reuse thair cups? Realistically if u drank a tea and then wanted a coffee u can just reuse the cup. Think looking for solutins to do with the products etc is good an all but really the root cause of all these problums are humans. We should change the way we think, as well as the way we act and then change will come about for certain.
Joanna Barnes
1:15pm on 1 Feb 21 Might be worth noting that with covid the use of reusable cups needs to be risk assessed, some local coffee shops have taken to using a wipeable tray to place the reusable cups on, negating the need for the staff to directly touch the customers cup #staysafe
Joanna Barnes
1:15pm on 1 Feb 21 Might be worth noting that with covid the use of reusable cups needs to be risk assessed, some local coffee shops have taken to using a wipeable tray to place the reusable cups on, negating the need for the staff to directly touch the customers cup #staysafe
Teagan Collyer
12:54pm on 1 Feb 21 Strongly agree with this idea. I saw a video, I think it was a marketing video for a hitch cup and it had some interesting statistics about this. I'll try to link the video below:
Isabelle Amor
12:46pm on 1 Feb 21 Absolutely agree, Boston Tea Party have a similar approach where they have no single use and rather sell/lend reusable cups
Tawny Buck
12:46pm on 1 Feb 21 I was very disappointed when I realised that there was NOWHERE on campus that would accept my reusable coffee cup. Theres so many positive arguments to ban single-use cups..
Esmee Turlej
12:36pm on 1 Feb 21 This so clearly must be done. We are a forward thinking university are we not? A ban of single use plastic on all campuses should already be the case.
Lynn Wiltshire
12:34pm on 1 Feb 21 I'm somewhat surprised this isn't the position already. Having only started this year I normally bring a small flask of drink with me, as I can't afford the prices of take away drinks - and certainly not branded versions. Perhaps the UWE could issue all students with a small flask with the UWE logo to promote an ecological and financially sustainable position?
Colette Grenville
12:25pm on 1 Feb 21 Great idea. this will definitely be a step in the right direction.
Clara Romero Collins
12:17pm on 1 Feb 21 This is so important to make an efficient difference. Let’s think about everyone else and the world we live in. THERE IS NO PLANET B
Samuel Helliar
12:17pm on 1 Feb 21 Whilst I agree with the idea, I've had my reusable cup refused at certain coffee shops due to COVID risk. I think this could be mitigated by coffee shops having cleanable cups that they can use to transfer the coffee into reusable cups people have brought in, so it's not exactly a hard problem to solve.
Jennifer Hird
12:16pm on 1 Feb 21 I really hope this is the start of a wholesale shift in the use of single-use plastic in the cafes and retail outlets at UWE.
Chiara Fargnoli
12:13pm on 1 Feb 21 Love this idea! It is time that we all try to minimize the amount of waste we produce!
Sam Carey
12:13pm on 1 Feb 21 First step to make us all realise how easy living sustainably can be.
Freddy Moorshead
11:52am on 1 Feb 21 reusable cups should be on sale at bower, it is far more sustainable than even compostable ones
Tomasz Heluszka
11:44am on 1 Feb 21 I back the idea of banning the single use cups. It is ridiculous how much waste there is not properly recycled. A use of in-house cups to drink by the coffee station or have your own. simple
Edzhem Yoztyurk
11:54am on 22 Jan 21 Cutting down single use plastics would be amazing especially on things that we use over and over again such as cutlery.
Julianna Munoz
3:17pm on 15 Jan 21 This is crucial for cutting down on single use plastic and getting students used to bringing their own travel mugs. Save our plnet
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