Library Eco-Friendliness: Welcome

Ever wondered what the Library is doing to be more eco-friendly? Here are some of the measures the Library has taken to be more friendly to the environment.

Did you know?

There are 46 recycle and waste bins available to students in the Library:

  • 15 bins for Paper
  • 9 bins for General Waste
  • 8 bins for Cans with liquid receptacle
  • 8 bins for Plastic with liquid receptacle
  • 6 bins for Coffee Cups with liquid and lid receptacles 


Other 'Green' Library Features

  • "Greener" ventilation and heating systems
  • Sensitive lighting system - sensors detect movement and turn on lights
  • Mediclinics hand dryers - some of the greenest on the market
  • Power switches for plugs along the walls
  • Power-saving machines that 'sleep' when not in use
  • Photocopying cards for the general public that are plastic-based, rather than disposable
  • "Flyposting" is not allowed in the Library (saves on paper)
  • Reduced poster and leaflet printing by the Library - trying to use the digital screens to replace paper promotions
  • Recycle all the posters received by students


Do you know all that your University Library does to be more friendly to the environment? From 'green' merchandise to recycling, we're doing our best to make sure the waste produced by this building and those inside of it is taken care of in an eco-friendly way.

The Library has made a conscious effort to decrease the amount of waste it produces and how that waste is disposed of. Additionally, there have been changes made during the redevelopment. Power-saving mode for machines. Machines 'sleep' when not in use. We use display screens to get information to students, rather than printing excess posters, flyers, or brochures. Before the redevelopment, all areas of the Library were lit during opening hours. With the new sensitive lighting system, an area is only lit if the sensors detect motion in the area. Plugs along the walls have power switches to save electricity when they are not in use.

If you have any ideas or suggestions for more ways in which we can reduce our impact on the environment, please fill out a You Said, We Did comment card available in the Library or email For more information, visit our You Said, We Did page on the website.

Library Merchandise

We make an effort to ensure all promotional materials and merchandise purchased by the Library is as eco-friendly as possible. A few examples are: 

  • KeepCups
  • Bags of Ethics - Fairtrade bags
  • Pencils made from recycled CD cases
  • Pens made from recycled plastic
  • Pencil cases made from recycled tires
  • "Green Range" paper from Antalis McNaughton



From a staff point of view

  • Individual printers were removed from staff offices - first part of the University to use Network Printing
  • Encourage cloud-based storage - keep certain files online rather than prining them, like agendas for meetings, etc.
  • Recycle retired print collections or donate to charities for reuse
  • St Andrews is a pilot UK University in reducing print copies and collections of journals
  • Staff are encouraged to use the stairs instead of the lift

Journal of Sustainability

Journal of Sustainability

"A publication of distinguished undergraduate research under the scope of social, economic, political and technological issues (both contemporary and historical) within the framework of the environment, sustainability and development.

"This journal aims to publish distinguished research by undergraduate students from all disciplines. Such a publication would bring together students of diverse interests all concerned with environmental issues and provide a platform for them to write about topics of significance that are potentially irrelevant to their degree. Additionally, it gives students the opportunity to publish compelling research they may have done for review essays or dissertations that would otherwise not be viewed by their peers.

"Other features to be included in the journal are interviews with members of staff, alumni profiles of University of St. Andrews students who have gone on to ‘green jobs,’ relevant book reviews, and editorials. Such features will offer a useful resource for students curious about where their degree might take them in the future, increase awareness about current research at the University of St. Andrews, and broaden general awareness about environmental issues."