• Rebecca

Managing Sustainability at UAL

At UAL our ambition is to be the most sustainable university we can be. We uphold the values of environmental stewardship, not only in our teaching and research but also in the way we live, work and operate.

In 2015 UAL’s Energy Management System was officially recognised with an international standard called ISO 50001.

This means we have an effective system for managing our energy consumption in order to improve our energy performance – reducing our consumption and using energy more efficiently.

This is a University wide effort and involves many people, from across the University, including those managing sites, those involved in refurbishment of our sites and of course the day to day users of our buildings. A successful energy management system needs the involvement of people – everyone at the University uses energy and has the potential to save (or waste) energy.

How can you help? UAL has already made good progress in reducing our energy consumption. By July 2016 we had achieved our target and reduced consumption by 26% (compared to consumption in 2005) but we’re aiming to go further. As well as improvements to more energy efficient technology we need positive actions from our staff and students. Good energy habits and spreading awareness helps. Even small things like switching off lights can help - did you know on average, lighting in a building can account for over 40% of a building’s electricity use?

You can see how the university and the building you work at is performing by looking at ualcarbondashboard.com. For example, look at the graph below – this shows High Holborn has reduced its consumption compared to the same time last year for several months. Well done High Holborn! If you have any suggestions for improving energy performance you can submit your idea on the ualcarbondashboard.com website too.

In March the University will be undergoing an audit to examine our energy management system to make sure it is still meeting the requirements set out in the international standard. We will also be seeking accreditation for a new standard called ISO 14001. This is an Environmental Management System. It is like 50001 but covers more aspects of the environment that the university affects, such as waste and water management.

So why bother? The ISO standards are a great way to show we are effectively and actively managing our impact on the environment. It is important that we are sticking to our environmental policies - as a large organisation the University has a responsibility to manage its effects on the environment. One of UAL’s key strategic aims is “An Inspirational Environment” and that means having sustainable environments.

Sticking to our policies not only helps to minimise impacts on the environment but also energy, waste and water efficiency makes good business sense.

You can find our policies here. This includes our energy policy, our environmental policy and our design brief for sustainability, among others.