The University of Canterbury is shifting to greener and better cleaning methods and janitorial supplies as the campus is upgraded. This move was foreshadowed in the (2012) UC Sustainability Strategy.
- microfibre cleaning cloths have been introduced into all of of UCs buildings, with the exception of heat and eat areas. Microfibre cloths work by trapping dirt and bacteria and lifting them out of surfaces. Because of this, chemicals are either not required, or not required to the same degree. This is better for cleaning staff, other users of the spaces, and for the environment.
- cleaning chemicals have been changed to Environmental Choice certified chemicals. Environmental Choice is administered independently of government, but is owned and endorsed by the government. It exists to improve the quality of the environment by encouraging more sustainable processes through the design, production, marketing, and use of products which have a reduced environment impact during their entire life cycle.
- all items placed in sanitary bins in women’s toilets are composted at the Envirocomp processing plant in North Canterbury. This is then mixed with green waste collected by Waimakiriri District Council, composted with nappies and similar products and screened to remove the plastic. The resulting compost can be used in gardens and is guaranteed pathogen free.
- foam soap is twice as efficient than the previous spray soaps, and is Green Seal certified.
- UC's main cleaning products supplier, Cannon OCS, are members of the Sustainable Business Network. They have been proactively involved with the Govt3 Sustainable Practices programme, and have implemented their own internal processes within Cannon OCS around waste minimisation and recycling, and moving towards less environmentally damaging chemicals.