Starting in 2019, the University of Padua has eliminated single-use plastic in the beverage and food distribution service through the UniPadova Plastic-Free Project.
The project falls in line with the agreement signed in 2019 by CRUI (Conference of Rectors of Italian Universities) with the Marevivo Association and CoNISMa – National Interuniversity Consortium for Science to join the #StopSingleUsePlastic campaign.
The project had three phases:
- 50 water dispensers connected to the urban water network supply were installed, ensuring the need for filtration and refrigeration. At the same time, plastic bottles were eliminatedfrom food and beverage vending machines, with an estimated reduction of 350,000 pieces per year;
- during the 2019-2020 academic year, the University distributed 18,000 stainless steel water bottles to students. The production process and distribution campaign upheld the sustainability incentives for its use;
- lastly, replacing plastic material for vending machine beverages (cups, coffee stirrers, bottles) in favour of ecological alternatives, estimated saving of almost 2M pieces of plastic annually.
Other actions to reduce single-use plastic
Replacing plastic bottles and cups for speakers during University events and meetings of governing bodies in favour of glass, paper or compostable cups, and bottles.