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Examples of our actions toward SDG 2

At Durham any food waste is collected for anaerobic digestion and converted to energy by our nominated waste contractor. We adopted the principles of the waste hierarchy: prevention, preparing for re-use, recycling, other recovery and disposal.

Read our waste management strategy Read our sustainable procurement policy


The Durham Centre for Crop Improvement Technology (DCCIT) directs Durham University's research strength in Agri-technology towards major challenges, especially food security and industrial plant-biotechnology, and works closely with collaborators from across the UK and overseas. The Centre has established a crop transformation and gene editing facility - a unique enabling technology amongst the N8 universities. We have developed efficient transformation procedures for wheat, rice and barley.
We also have a range of different research on Nutrition, Agriculture and Health
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We provide a range of UG and PG modules on SDG2 for example Crops for the Future in the department of Biology on crop protection and improvement and the module The Four Horsemen: Pestilence, War, Famine and Death on what has been the impact of disease and harvest failures upon human societies. Healthy soils store more carbon, which can help fight climate change. They also store more water, which helps fight flooding and droughts.
Read about our work on 'Unlocking the secrets of soil'
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Wider Student Experience

Enactus Durham is a non-profit, student-led organisation operating within Durham University. Within the Enactus programme, students will have a chance to help tackle the UN Sustainable Development Goals on both a local and global scale. An example of one of the projects is 'The Ugly Fruit Group' which aims to beat hunger by reducing food waste, via the three pillars: reusing, donating and educating.
The Ugly Fruit Group
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Living the Values

Ther are endless opportunites for both staff and students to get involved with volunteering activities both with College but also at a wider Universtiy level. As part of Volunteering at Ustinov College, we have partnered with the West End Refugee Shelter (WERS) and West End Food Bank in Newcastle. WERS provides support to asylum seekers. The West End Food Bank is an emergency food bank that is one of the busiest food banks in the UK with over 30,000 people depending upon its services annually.
Explore our Global Citizenship Programme - Volunteering
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As part of the N8 Research Partnership we teamed up with African Union Development Agency AUDA- NEPAD to host sustainable food systems event at COP26. The challenge of providing a sustainable and nutritious food system in Africa is linked intrinsically to climate change. Through our Institute of Hazard,Risk and Resilience we have adopted a participatory dialogue to co-produce novel holistic solutions that combine stakeholder knowledge and strengths with land productivity restoration technologies
Find out how we are addressing Land Insecurity and Poverty in Africa
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Local and Regional

The Remediation of Brownfiled using Sustainable Techologies (ROBUST) project attracted regional and national engagement, involving local communities as well as policymakers in the government. The study found that soil health can be significantly improved using novel technologies including the use of clean waste minerals in combination with clean organic matter sources such as compost to revitalise degraded soi
See how low-cost sustainable technologies remediate pollution in urban soils
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Governance and Policy

Our research has led to debate on soil health at policy-making level and in the Parliament. It has also been recognised by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). s a direct consequence of Professor Johnson's work, she has presented to the Soil Health Inquiry on urban soils and engaged with the Environmental Audit Select Committee. Since the Inquiry, soil has become a major consideration of the UK government’s 25-year Environment Plan.
Our work on soil health: Influencing government policies
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Free Breakfast Club

To support the wider-university’s cost of living initiatives, free breakfasts clubs will be available at the following locations, enabling students to have something to eat before lectures.
Free Breakfast Clubs
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Japanese food

Surplus Food Initiative

To support the wider-university’s cost of living and environmental initiatives, we have partnered with the Too Good To Go app. Food waste is a big problem the Too Good To Go app lets you rescue unsold food from an untimely fate at your favourite spots.

Partnership to fight foodwaste Be sustainable and get rewarded