Sustainability at the University of Huddersfield

In early 2020 the Climate Emergency Steering Group was established at the University to respond to the Climate Emergency. Attended by the Students’ Union, researchers in climate change plus representatives from support services including Estates and Facilities Management and chaired by Professor Tim Thornton, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, the steering group collaborated to produce the Carbon Neutral Strategy: A Ten Point Plan for the Planet.

Adopted by the University Council in November 2020, the plan reflects the University’s commitment to achieving carbon neutrality across all areas of the University. It aims to address the breadth of sustainable development whilst establishing new net zero targets for Huddersfield. As part of this plan, the University of Huddersfield will achieve net zero carbon emissions for scope 1 and scope 2 by 2030, and for scope 3 by 2045.

These commitments build on the University’s long-standing dedication to sustainability and environmental improvement; great work has already been carried out ensuring that the University met and exceeded its carbon reduction targets for scope 1 and 2 in 2020. The details of the plan can viewed below.

Carbon neutral strategy: A Ten-Point Plan for the Planet

  1. Our new-build estate will achieve BREEAM Excellent and WELL Building standards

    Responsible: Tim Hosker, Director of Estates & Facilities

  2. We will reduce our travel impacts by investing in alternatives such as conferencing and distance-learning technologies, and supporting public transport and active travel initiatives

    Responsible: Krish Pilicudale, Director of Digital (standing item SPPIB) / Tim Hosker, Director of Estates & Facilities

  3. We will invest in digital solutions to reduce our carbon impact

    Responsible: Krish Pilicudale, Director of Digital (standing item SPPIB)

  4. We will place sustainability at the heart of our curriculum, ensuring it is at the centre of our understanding of future global professionals

    Responsible: Jane Owen-Lynch, PVC Teaching & Learning (standing item UTLC)

  5. Our research will enhance the sustainability agenda, and we will disseminate its findings

    Responsible: Andrew Ball, PVC Research & Enterprise (standing item URC)

  6. We will enhance biodiversity in the environment in and around campus

    Responsible: Tim Hosker, Director of Estates & Facilities

  7. We will partner with the West Yorkshire Forest to plant at least one tree for every student who enrols with us, including work on urban tree-planting and tree-planting with schools, making offset relevant and effective

    Responsible: Tim Thornton, Deputy Vice-Chancellor

  8. We will invest over £1m in carbon reduction measures in the next six years

    Responsible: Tim Hosker, Director of Estates & Facilities

  9. We will achieve net zero carbon emissions, for scope 1 & 2, by 2030

    Responsible: Tim Thornton, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (standing item SLT)

  10. We will achieve net zero carbon emissions, for scope 3, by 2045

    Responsible: Tim Thornton, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (standing item SLT)

Approved 25 November by University Council.

 

Scope 1: emissions from sources directly owned or controlled by the University

Scope 2: generated by use of energy bought from a utility provider

Scope 3: occurring from sources that the University does not own or control, for example covering emissions associated with business travel, procurement, waste and water

Green Week: A Carbon Neutral University

Green Week: A Carbon Neutral University was the first event of it's kind held virtually at the University between 22nd-26th February!

The week consisted of a variety of events including upcycling workshops, food waste and sustainable textile seminars along with a WALL-E watch party and was headlined by The University of Huddersfield's Journey to Net-Zero: a panel event. This exciting event was attended by Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Professor Tim Thornton and other members of the Climate Emergency steering group who have developed the Carbon Neutral Strategy. You canwatch the full event here, where our panelists discussed the Carbon Neutral Strategy: a Ten-Point Plan for the Planet and answered your questions on how the University plans to address the climate emergency.  

Green Week was a huge success, enabling staff, students and the wider University community to engage with sustainability at the University, and we look forward to hosting Green Week again in 2022! Please don't hesitate to get in touch with any future event ideas.

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