Keele University has reduced its campus carbon emissions by 39%, exceeding its own target for 2020.
In 2019, the university was one of the first in the UK to declare a ‘climate emergency’ and said that, as part of it 2010 Carbon Management Plan, it would aim to be carbon neutral by 2030.
Having targeted a 34% reduction in campus carbon emissions by 2020, it went on to achieve a 39% reduction – before the impact of Covid-19.
“We are very pleased to be able to announce that we met our 2020 target a year early for the 2018/19 academic year,” said Professor Mark Ormerod, deputy vice-chancellor and provost, and Keele University’s sustainability lead.
“This is a genuine and significant absolute reduction despite it coinciding with a period of significant growth of the university, and before the impact of Covid-19, which has inevitably significantly reduced our operations and therefore carbon emissions this year.
“The University is determined to play its part in society’s efforts to drastically reduce carbon emissions urgently which is required, on an international level, to limit global warming and avoid the catastrophic consequences of climate change.
“Keele has had a strong institutional level commitment to sustainability for over a decade across all aspects of its operations, education, research, its campus and community, and external engagement, and is recognised as a sector leader for its whole-institution approach to sustainability, embedding sustainability in everything we do.
Keele’s energy and carbon saving initiatives
- £5 million investment in improving energy equipment across campus
- Construction of sustainable buildings such as the Smart Innovation Hub and Central Science Laboratories
- Installation of more than 250kWp of solar photo-voltaic (PV) panels on the roof of campus buildings
- A new solar/wind power development on the edge of campus will see up to 26,000 solar PV panels and two wind turbines generate up to 80% of the campus’ electricity demand
- Introduction of alternative energy technologies such as biomass and heat pumps
- HyDeploy, the first practical experiment in the UK involving blending hydrogen with natural gas
- The largest single, integrated electricity and heat Smart Energy Network Demonstrator (SEND) in Europe.
- A new Institute for Sustainable Futures to drive research into issues such as climate change, food security and clean energy on a local, national and global scale
- A commitment to divest from fossil fuels and focus its investments in companies with a positive environmental and/or societal impact