Climate change and finite energy resources have been identified as two of the biggest challenges facing the world today. In 2008 the UK Government passed the legally binding Climate Change Act committing to reduce carbon emissions 80% by 2050 and 34% by 2020 against a baseline of emissions in 1990.
The University of Greenwich has set aspirational targets to reduce its carbon emissions 30% by 2015 and 40% by 2020 on a 2009/10 baseline. Our Carbon Management Plan is a six year £6m investment programme delivering a range of activities some of which are highlighted in our latest Carbon Management Report can be found within our Annual Sustainability Report. The carbon missions included in the target include our Scope 1 (direct emissions) Scope 2 (indirect emissions from electricity we use) and Scope 3 (from our indirect transport related emissions (set out in our Travel Plan). We report all other Scope 3 emission through the Higher Education Statistical Agency EMR Report.
The bill for gas and electricity at the University is approximately £2 million per year. At Greenwich we are implementing a number of projects and programmes to reduce our carbon footprint (carbon footprint is a measure of how much greenhouse gases are produced, usually measured in tonnes of CO2), reduce the amount of energy used by the university and save money on our bills. Please review the Report for further information.
If you have an idea for a carbon saving project in your Faculty or Office please let us know! There is money available to fund your ideas so get in touch with us at email@example.com.
All our halls of residence participate in the NUS’s Student Switch Off programme, this helps inform and reward students to cut their carbon (energy). Our own webpage with info about ideas and competitions can be found here. Our halls energy use can be viewed in this link.
The University now has automatic water meters for all buildings helping us review usage and target leakages. Through the installation of 130 waterless urinals throughout the estate we expect to save 13 million litres of water, the equivalent of 43,000 four minute showers.
Tips to reduce your carbon footprint:
Staff and students
- Turn off lighting and equipment in offices and lecture theatres (especially the last lecture of the day)
- Switch off chargers when not needed
- Turnoff your PC if you’re away from your desk for more than an hour
- Don’t adjust thermostat controls or use fan heaters if you’re too hot or cold. Avoid opening windows if the heating or air conditioning is switched on. Contact your local Facilities Management Office to remedy the situation
- Turn off running taps
- Reuse and recycle as much as possible
- Reduce the carbon impacts of your travel
- Buy less stuff! In almost every manufactured product carbon has been emitted in its production, distribution and sale. Try and buy less and consider the embedded carbon (carbon footprint) of what you buy and try and minimise it.
Staff you can additionally help by: asking your Sustainability Champion/Sustainable Development Unit for advice as to how you and your department can reduce your carbon footprint such as:
- Use MFD’s rather than desktop printers
- Consider carbon reduction opportunities in your research, projects and curriculum
- As flights have a huge carbon impact look into ways to reduce or avoid business flights.
Data Analysis Opportunities
Staff and students can analyse our monthly electricity, gas and water use and renewable electricity generation data by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org for a full version of the spreadsheet imaged below. For specific projects access to half-hourly data is also possible. Contact the above address to request.
Governance and Staff and Student Engagement in Carbon Management
The University welcomes the input and engagement in our strategy to reduce our carbon footprint. Staff and students can get involved in many ways including:
- Inputting into our Carbon Management Plan. Our 2016-2020 Plan is currently being reviewed and updated. Please submit ideas and recommendations to email@example.com by 31 August 2016.
- If you would like to attend our Sustainability Management Board Meeting (which includes the review of our Carbon Management Plan contact firstname.lastname@example.org
- If you have ideas that can reduce the energy use of the University funding may be available to develop them. Email email@example.com for an application pack.
- If you would like to analyse our energy use and generation data contact us on the above email.
- If you would like to further engage in the delivery of our Carbon Management Plan and discuss how it can be utilised as part of your teaching, learning, research or in its application as an element of the University’s Living Lab programme contact the above email.
The University is proud to source all its electricity from renewable generators: