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Eco-Home March 2014 bulletin

Web Administrator   Thu 24 Apr 2014   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Find out the latest news from the Eco-Home Student and the Eco-Home Community projects in Belfast. Also in this March’s bulletin some super, saving ideas.

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View March's bulletin

Students Improve their Local Environment with the Student Eco-Home Programme

Web Administrator   Wed 02 Apr 2014   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Student households across Belfast have been shining up their green credentials and becoming more environmentally friendly by following simple steps laid out in Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful’s Eco-Home programme. The Student Eco-Home project has been funded by the NGO Challenge Fund administered by NIEL.

The programme sets out easy to follow steps for householders on how to become more eco-friendly in four topic areas: Energy, Water, Transport and Waste. The Belfast students have been focusing on Waste and Recycling. Waste is one of the main areas of expenditure in Northern Ireland with over 1 million tonnes of waste being generated each year; this equates to 1.75 tonnes per person!

Students taking part in the Eco-Home project have been going to workshops and getting information on being more environmentally efficient at home and on how to save money on household bills. They were also keen to give back to the communities they live in during term time by taking to the streets to pick up litter from the residential areas in and around Elms Village and Stranmillis. During the clean-up around Elms Village Queen’s students gathered 11 bin bags of litter, 5 of which were full of recyclable materials, and also 5 buckets of glass; around Stranmillis streets, students gathered 20 bags of litter and glass. The Queen’s students living in Elms Village also rolled up their sleeves to spruce up the Elms’ garden patch to get ready for spring planting.

Carmel Fyfe, Manager at Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful said: “It is great to see so many students in Belfast participating in the Eco-Home programme and doing their part for the local environment by tackling the issues of waste and litter in the student areas. Not only are they saving money by reducing waste but are also helping to keep the rates bill down for everyone by properly sorting and recycling plastic, paper and cans. The Eco-Home programme is available to all households and is good for the environment, the economy and the householder and we would love to hear from other households interested in getting involved also.”

Gwen Smyth from Queen’s Accommodation and Hospitality Services said: “It is great to see students really taking the initiative and getting involved within the Eco-Home Programme. We work hard each year with students to reduce our landfill waste and to recycle more; our clothes and books swaps are proving to be very popular, all of which is making a contribution to a better environment.”

Pupils waste no time sorting their rubbish...

Web Administrator   Fri 21 Mar 2014   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Pupils at St Malachy’s Primary School, in the Markets area of Belfast, put their recycling know-how to the test in a Waste and Recycling workshop as part of the Eco-Home Initiative. Eco-Home provides householders with all the advice and tips needed to help make the home a more environmentally friendly place and to save money as a result. The programme is operated by the environmental charity Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful, and is supported by Belfast City Council.

Children from P3 to P7 impressed the Eco-Home team with their savvy recycling ways and have enthusiastically taken up the challenge of getting everyone in the family more involved in household recycling too.

Carmel Fyfe, Eco-Schools Manager, Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful said “Eco-Home participants carry out simple actions and make some small changes to their behaviour. These small changes all add up, giving people the chance to do their bit for the environment and save some money too!”

The council pays roughly £900 for each general waste lorry compared to under £100 for a lorry load of recyclable waste. By recycling as much as possible we can reduce the amount of waste going to landfill and will help keep the rates bills down.

Councillor Steven Corr, Chairman of Belfast City Council's Health and Environmental Services Committee, said: “We are very pleased to be supporting the Eco-Home programme. This free initiative will help save ratepayers money within their homes and reduce the amount of waste we are sending to landfill, saving the environment too. Belfast City Council is committed to increasing our recycling rate to 50% and the Eco-Home programme helps householders do their part. If everyone makes small changes we can achieve big things.”

Eco-Home, funded by Belfast City Council’s Zero Waste campaign, which is aimed at increasing the recycling rate within Belfast to at least 50% by 2020, is free to all householders.

February Eco-Home Bulletin

Web Administrator   Wed 19 Mar 2014   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Catch up with all the latest Eco-Home News in our Eco-Home February Bulletin update.

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View February's bulletin

Eco-Home Community Competition

Web Administrator   Thu 13 Mar 2014   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

To reward families from Belfast for their eco-efforts in registering for our community project, each household registered with Eco-Home by 25th March 2014 will be entered into a prize draw. The winning household will be treated to a family-friendly day out to their choice of one of Belfast’s many attractions. Maybe you’ll be bowled over by Dundonald Icebowl, go ape at the Zoo or experience part of Belfast’s rich history by visiting the world-famous Titanic Belfast. And it doesn’t end there! With a voucher valid in 17 restaurants within Victoria Square you’ll be spoilt for choice! Whether you’re craving Mexican, Italian, New York style or Asian your family will not be disappointed. So register by 25th March to be in with your chance to win!

The Eco-Home Community Competition is sponsored by Belfast City Council.

Please Note: Winners must be at least 18 years old, live in the Belfast City Council area and be willing to take part in publicity/advertising if required by Eco-Home Northern Ireland. There is no cash alternative and the prize is non-transferable. The prize is based on a family of five members.

Students Ponder the Problems of Waste and the Profits of Recycling

Web Administrator   Wed 26 Feb 2014   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Belfast Students are tackling the issue of waste disposal and recycling through participation in Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful’s Eco-Home programme. The student project is working with three colleges across Belfast; Stranmillis University College, Queen’s University Belfast and Belfast MET. Students access information on how to save money and the environment through practical advice and develop lifelong eco-attitudes!

Stranmillis University College are working towards becoming Northern Ireland’s first Eco-Campus and welcomed the opportunity to invite Eco-Home to the campus during their ‘Green Week’ to chat to students about waste and recycling and introduce the Eco-Home programme.

Christopher Teggarty from Stranmillis’ Eco-Campus Committee said: “We are delighted to be to be associated with the Eco-Home Student project alongside Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful. The Stranmillis Eco-Committee has been spreading the green message by actively encouraging students and staff to be more aware of their waste management both at home and at work. The project is a great way to inform people about ways to save money as well as protect the environment through improving recycling habits. By working together with Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful, our goal is to improve awareness of environmental issues and concerns."

Carmel Fyfe, Eco-Schools Manager, Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful said: “It is wonderful to see student households across the city getting involved in the Eco-Home Programme and making simple changes like recycling and switching off appliances which all add up. Our young people are not only developing environmentally friendly habits that will last a lifetime but are saving money and helping to keep rate bills down by reducing waste to landfill.”

The Eco-Home website offers lots of useful information and ideas on how to be more environmentally active at home, is open to all householders and suggests not only great ways that to prevent waste but also how to reduce energy and water usage and consider greener transport methods. To take part, simply complete a short survey and get recommendations on practical actions you can make in your home. Once you’ve made the changes, you complete a second survey to find out the value of your improvements.

The Eco-Home Student project funded by the NGO challenge fund and administered by NIEL is running until the end of March. Every student who registers with the Eco-Home project by 25th March 2014 will be entered into a prize draw where they will have the chance to win an eco-prize to the value of £70. To find out more information on the prize and take part in Eco-Home join register now or call the Eco-Home team at Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful on 028 9073 6920.

The Students will also be taking part in Northern Ireland’s biggest volunteer clean up and collecting litter in the Stranmillis area as part of Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful’s BIG Spring Clean. To find out more information or register your own clean up event go to www.bigspringclean.org.

Win prizes with Student Eco-Home project...

Web Administrator   Mon 03 Feb 2014   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Each student registered with Eco-Home by 25th March 2014 will be entered into a prize draw. Eco-Home is giving away three bags of goodies (one each for Stranmillis College, Queen’s University and Belfast MET) to students who register* and take part in the Student Eco-Home project.

With gift vouchers for popular eateries winning students will be able to bolt down burritos from Boojum, sample sensational subs from Subway and guzzle gallons of coffee from Starbucks. Also included in each prize goodie bag is a 500GB hard drive for storing heaps of data to help students save on printing costs and help save the environment!

The Student Eco-Home project is funded by the NGO Challenge Fund (administered by NIEL) and is designed to increase awareness of the issues surrounding waste disposal and recycling. The project provides students with ideas on how to save money and the environment through practical advice, and hopefully develop lifelong eco-attitudes!

Registering with Eco-Home and completing a short survey will allow students to find out how eco-friendly their home is and will provide them with simple actions to improve their sustainable lifestyle.

* When registering on the Eco-Home website select your College in the ‘Group’ drop-down to ensure you are entered in the prize draw for your college.

Please Note: There is no cash alternative and the prize is non-transferable.

New Year Bulletin

Web Administrator   Wed 15 Jan 2014   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Hello from Eco-Home,

Welcome to our first Eco-Home Bulletin of the New Year! A big thank you to those of you who have already registered with the Eco-Home programme. By registering your household you are actively helping to preserve our environment, reduce the amount of waste being sent to landfill, and saving money. We hope that you have started to implement the Eco-Home action plans and the various tips that we suggest on our website and in the Householder Handbook. Hopefully you are noticing savings and waste reduction in your household.

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Eco-Home January 2014

June Eco-Home Bulletin

Web Administrator   Wed 19 Jun 2013   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Check out all the latest news in our June Eco-Home Bulletin. Eco-Home Bulletin June 2013.

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June 2013 Bulletin

Eco-home Bulletin May 2013

Web Administrator   Wed 29 May 2013   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Take a look at our Eco-Home Bulletin for May 2013.

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View May 2013 bulletin

Student Eco-Home leads the way in recycling

Web Administrator   Thu 09 May 2013   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Spring cleaning their home in an environmentally conscious way is top of the agenda for a student household on the Ormeau Road. Aurelija Mikalauskaite and her housemates are taking part in TIDY Northern Ireland’s Eco-Home programme which is supported by Belfast City Council and the Department of the Environment’s Rethink Waste Campaign.

Aurelija is a first year student of Applied Sciences at Belfast Metropolitan College and became interested in the Eco-Home programme while working on a sustainability project. She was shocked by the statistics on waste - over 120,000 tonnes of waste was collected from Belfast households in 2011, the recycling rate was 32%, which meant that 80,000 tonnes or two Titanics worth was sent to landfill. It is estimated that 70% of our household waste could be recycled. Disposing of tea bags alone cost Belfast City Council £30,000 in landfill charges; tea bags could easily be disposed of in the brown compost bin. Aurelija decided to use the Eco-Home programme to improve her own environmental habits. She quickly got all of her housemates on board and now they are recycling more, reusing plastic bottles, wasting less food and switching their TV and chargers off when not in use. She said: ‘After reading my Eco-Home survey results I started to think about waste more seriously. I think everyone could benefit from this programme. I know lots of people think that anything they do individually will be small and won’t make a difference to the environment, but if everyone does something, together it can change things.’

Aurelija paid a visit to the Ormeau Road recycling facility to see what services are available there and met Councillor Pat McCarthy, Chairman of Belfast City Council’s Health and Environmental Services Committee, he said: “We are very pleased to be supporting the Eco-Home initiative as it represents a win-win not just for the environment, but for our ratepayers across the city. If other householders embrace the Eco-Home programme as Aurelija has done they could find that it makes a huge difference to their household bills and the amount of waste they are producing. Reducing the amount of waste we produce as a city is something the council is committed to and we need to see Belfast’s recycling rate reach at least 50%. This new initiative puts the issue back in the spotlight and is a reminder to people of the benefits of going green.”

The programme suggests not only great ways that householders can prevent waste but also how to reduce energy and water usage and consider greener transport methods. To take part, simply complete a short survey to get recommendations on efficiency changes you can make to your home. Once you’ve made the changes, you complete a second survey to find out the value of your improvements.

Carmel Fyfe, TIDY Northern Ireland said: “It is great to see Aurelija and her flatmates getting involved in the Eco-Home programme and taking simple actions like recycling and switching off appliances which all add up. Not only is Aurelija saving money but she is also helping to keep our rates bill down by properly sorting and recycling. We would invite all householders in Belfast to be an Eco-Home which is good for the environment, the economy and the householder.”

To take part in Eco-Home, join online at www.eco-homeni.org or call the Eco-Home team at TIDY Northern Ireland on 028 9073 6920. For information on Belfast City Council’s Recycling Centres and an A-Z of recyclables go to www.belfastcity.gov.uk.

Householders who register and complete the programme by May 31st will be entered into a prize draw where they will have a chance to win an Eco-Hamper to the value of £75.

Eco-Home gets a visit from Radio Ulster's 'On Your Behalf'

Web Administrator   Mon 08 Apr 2013   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

TIDY Northern Ireland, Belfast City Council and BBC Radio Ulster visited one Eco-Home participant to find out how he is benefitting from the Eco-Home Programme. Thomas Dunbar, who lives with his wife and daughter in South Belfast, registered with the programme in February and has been implementing the Eco-Home action plans and tips ever since.

Thomas said: “I joined the Eco Home programme as I liked the idea of being able to self-audit my impact on the environment. It is a very easy process to follow, and even in the short term it has enabled me to make small changes to my every day energy usage which will have long term cost benefits.”

TIDY Northern Ireland’s Chief Executive, Dr Ian Humphreys said: “Thomas is doing all the right things and by turning appliances off standby, turning the heating down and cycling rather than using the car he is saving money. He is also keeping the rates bill down by properly sorting and recycling plastic, paper and cans. He is a great ambassador for the Eco-Home programme, which is good for the environment, the economy and the householder. Visit the website or order the printed materials today and see what savings you can make.”

Councillor Pat McCarthy, Chairman of Belfast City Council’s Health and Environmental Services Committee said: “We are very pleased to be supporting the Eco-Home initiative as it represents a win-win not just for the environment, but for our ratepayers across the city. If other householders embrace the Eco-Home programme as Thomas has done they could find that it makes a huge difference to their household bills and the amount of waste they are producing. Reducing the amount of waste we produce as a city is something the council is committed to and we need to see Belfast’s recycling rate reach at least 50%. This new initiative puts the issue back in the spotlight and is a reminder to people of the benefits of going green.”

The BBC Radio Ulster interview by Linda McAuley with Thomas Dunbar will be aired on ‘On Your Behalf’ on Saturday 6th April at 9.30am and will be available on BBC iPlayer from Saturday onwards.

Eco-Home Bulletin April 2013

Web Administrator   Mon 08 Apr 2013   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Have a look at our Eco-Home April Bulletin.

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Eco-Home Bulletin March 2013

Web Administrator   Wed 20 Mar 2013   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Please take time to read our Bulletin for March 2013.

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Belfast Metropolitan College embrace greener living with Eco-Home programme!

Web Administrator   Mon 18 Mar 2013   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Environmental charity TIDY Northern Ireland have teamed up with Belfast Metropolitan College to help tackle climate change. During Climate Week - which ran from March 4th - 10th - the College’s EnviroMET team encouraged staff and students to participate in environmental and sustainable initiatives, and so Belfast City Council and the Eco-Home team visited the college’s Titanic campus on the 7th of March to share information on how the Eco-Home programme could help people save money in the home by acting in more environmentally friendly ways.

The new Eco-Home programme is open to all householders living in the Belfast City Council area, and is supported by Belfast City Council and the Department of the Environment’s Rethink Waste Campaign. This exciting new environmental programme has been created to promote waste prevention and sustainable living to all householders who can register at www.eco-homeni.org. Participants carry out simple actions and change their environmental behaviours in small ways that can make a big difference. Those who implement the programme should benefit through a reduction in the amount of waste they produce and through money saved from lower fuel and energy bills, whilst at the same time knowing they are helping to save the environment.

Carmel Fyfe, Eco-Schools Manager at TIDY Northern Ireland said: “Eco-Home is not only free to join - it will save you money. Eco-Home is suitable for all type of households and it is wonderful to see staff and students alike at Belfast Metropolitan getting involved and we would encourage every household in Belfast City Council to join them in becoming an Eco-Home too. “

Councillor Pat McCarthy, Chairman of Belfast City Council’s Health and Environmental Services Committee, said: “We are very pleased to be supporting the Eco-Home initiative as it represents a win-win not just for the environment, but for our ratepayers across the city. If every single person even made a small change, it would make a huge difference. Reducing the amount of waste we produce as a city is something the council is committed to and we need to see Belfast’s recycling rate reach at least 50%. This new initiative puts the issue back in the spotlight and is a reminder to people of the benefits of going green.”

Edward Adams from Belfast Metropolitan College said: “Make a change and start saving! The Eco-home programme is a great idea which shows our students that by taking some really simple steps they can not only save money but make a significant contribution to help our environment. The survey is really easy to complete and the scores are a great way of comparing their home with someone else. I expect this initiative will result in some long-term behaviour changes for the better and think more people should be involved.”

Individuals and groups are encouraged to sign up to the programme - Belfast Metropolitan College are a registered group with the Eco-Home programme and a growing number of staff and students continue to register. To register a group contact the Eco-Home team on info@eco-homeni.org or phone TIDY Northern Ireland on 028 9073 6920.

How it works

Individual householders can register and complete the Eco-Home Householder Survey 1 online at www.eco-homeni.org (or send to TIDY Northern Ireland if completing manually). You will receive a percentage score according to your answers.

Next follow the simple tips under the four themes - waste, water, energy and transport. It is recommended that householders begin with the easiest actions and then progress towards completing the more difficult or time consuming actions over the months that follow.

Finally, complete Householder Survey 2 and find out your new result; it is recommended that you wait 2-3 months before submitting your second survey as this gives an adequate amount of time to properly implement some of the tips to start noticing savings. Householders who register and complete the programme by May 31st will be entered into a prize draw where they will have a chance to win an ‘eco-hamper’ to the value of £75.

Eco-Home launch event in Ikea

Web Administrator   Tue 19 Feb 2013   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

New Eco-Home programme helps householders save money and the environment.

Environmental charity TIDY Northern Ireland are delighted to announce the launch of their new Eco-Home programme with support from Belfast City Council and the Department of the Environment’s Rethink Waste Campaign.

Eco-Home is an exciting new environmental programme created to promote waste prevention and sustainable living to all householders throughout the Belfast City Council area. Participants carry out simple actions and change their environmental behaviours in small ways that can make a big difference. Those who implement the programme should benefit through a reduction in the amount of waste they produce and through money saved from lower fuel and energy bills, whilst at the same time knowing they are helping to save the environment.

The Eco-Home programme had its first launch event in Ikea Belfast on the 8th of February, where members of Belfast City Council and TIDY Northern Ireland staff joined Seaview Primary School pupils, staff and parents who will be getting involved in the Eco-Home Programme.

Ian Humphreys, Chief Executive, TIDY Northern Ireland said: “Eco-Home is not only free to join - it will save you money. It will also help keep your rates bill down by saving Belfast City Council money. And more waste being recycled means more local jobs. So, Eco-Home is good for the environment, good for the economy and good for you. Please take a look at the website or order the printed materials today and see what a difference you can make.”

Councillor Pat McCarthy, Chairman of Belfast City Council’s Health and Environmental Services Committee, said: “We are very pleased to be supporting the Eco-Home initiative as it represents a win-win not just for the environment, but for our ratepayers across the city. If every single person even made a small change, it would make a huge difference. Reducing the amount of waste we produce as a city is something the council is committed to and we need to see Belfast’s recycling rate reach at least 50%. This new initiative puts the issue back in the spotlight and is a reminder to people of the benefits of going green.”

How to join the Eco-Home programme

Households throughout Belfast are being invited to take part in the programme either as an individual householder or as part of a group. Households can register online at www.eco-homeni.org. Those without internet access can register by calling the Eco-Home team at TIDY Northern Ireland on 028 9073 6920.

Those who register and complete the programme will be entered into a prize draw where they will have a chance to win one of three ‘eco-hampers’ to the value of £75, comprised of various household items that will help participants act in environmentally friendly ways in the home.

How it works

Register and complete the Eco-Home Householder Survey 1 online (or send to TIDY Northern Ireland if completing manually). You will receive a percentage score according to your answers; for example a home that receives 25% has a lot of room for improvements; a home that receives 85% might have a few small changes to put in place.

Next follow the simple tips under the four themes - waste, water, energy and transport. It is recommended that householders begin with the easiest actions and then progress towards completing the more difficult or time consuming actions over the months that follow.

Finally, complete Householder Survey 2 and find out your new result; it is recommended that you wait 2-3 months before submitting your second survey as this gives an adequate amount of time to properly implement some of the tips to start noticing savings.

For further information on the Eco-Home programme see www.eco-homeni.org

Extreme Recycler filled just ONE rubbish bag in a year...

Web Administrator   Tue 08 Jan 2013   updated: Tue 22 Sep 2015

Extreme Recycler filled just ONE rubbish bag in a year after making a resolution to reuse as much waste as possible

The Mail Online covers a story on how an 'Extreme Recycler' filled just ONE rubbish bag in a year after making a resolution to reuse as much waste as possible. Read the full story here and see if you can follow some of his waste reduction methods in your own home.