Student Union president who banned beef admits students wouldn't pay more for universities to be greener


The SU President who campaigned for Goldsmiths University to ban beef from being sold on its campus has admitted that students would not pay more for their education to be made more environmentally friendly.

Joe Leam, who ran for his position on a manifesto pledge of a ‘Green New Deal’ for Goldsmiths University, said students wanted to see tuition fees abolished and would not accept higher fees to pay for green investments.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Mr Leam acknowledged that the beef ban was a “symbolic gesture” but said it showed the university “taking responsibility for their share of carbon emissions”.

“We have to make these sacrifices,” he said. 

“There are alternatives to beef but ultimately if we don’t make these sacrifices, it’s short sighted. We have to, otherwise the planet’s going to burn.”

But asked if students would be willing to pay more for their degrees if building modifications and green investments were expensive, Mr Leam said: “I don’t believe they would. I believe the vast body of students want free education, to be honest with you.”


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