We are excited to announce a month-long social media campaign for our internal reuse network, Warp It, this August.
In 2014, the University embarked on a trial of Warp It, an online platform similar to eBay that allows staff and PhD students within our organisation to redistribute surplus goods. For example, if you had a laminator that you no longer need, you can post it on Warp It and someone from the University who needs a laminator could claim it. Warp It is one of several ways the University encourages staff to embed resource efficiency and ‘circular economy thinking’ in their roles in order to make the University more sustainable.
The circular economy is about transitioning from a ‘take-make-dispose’ linear approach to resource use to systems that encourage reuse and extraction of maximum value before returning resources to the biosphere.
Popular items redistributed on the portal include printer cartridges, stationery, office items and electrical equipment.
As of June 2017, the University’s Warp It portal had allowed over 22,500 kg of goods to be redistributed to date, resulting in over £270,000 worth of savings.
Several Warp It users told us about their experiences, including how it made a clear out easier, how they snagged a much-needed freebie and how they support the ethos behind the network.
Jo Newman, Administrator/ Personal Assistant to Director of LTWS, told us about how Warp It helped when they were moving offices:
We used the site extensively while we were sorting out our former offices prior to our big move to Argyle House. Lots of stationery (such as desk trays and picture frames) were claimed by other parts of the University, which was great. We buy far too much of the stuff! Sadly nobody wanted a whole stack of computer-locking cables and some padlocks, so they had to go to the recycling. I like the idea of Warp It and I wish more parts of the University made use of it.
If you have unwanted items, try listing them and see if someone else in the University needs them.
Louise Hogg, Research Technician, saved splashing out on a new dishwasher by claiming one for free on Warp It:
Warp It allowed us to source a free dishwasher for the biology lab which saved a dispute over cost for the replacement.
You can create a wishlist on Warp It, so you don’t have to rely on chance alone for the item you want to turn up.
Louise Finnie (Financial Systems Support/Development Officer) sums up the benefits of using Warp It:
Great idea to recycle goods between departments, saving money and cutting down on waste.
Our plan for 2017/18 is to continue to grow use of the site and reach out to more PhD students. Currently, we have over 800 users across the University. More staff and PhD students using the site will only increase the amount of reuse which will, in turn, save waste, save carbon and of course, save cash.