Brite Green’s latest higher education University Carbon Report shows that universities in England have achieved their best year-on-year reduction in carbon emissions to date, although the sector is still not on track to meet the 2020 HEFCE target.
Brite Green has published its fourth annual University Carbon Report for the higher education sector, providing an independent and impartial review of the carbon emissions performance of universities in England for the academic year 2015/2016. The report also includes performance tables for both absolute emissions reductions and intensity metrics, allowing for easy comparison against peers.
As in previous years, we have produced an individual report for each university to provide personalised benchmarking and performance data. You can order a copy with a valid email address for that institution.
This year's report is supported by Salix Finance.
Carbon performance analysis: key findings
Our analysis shows that the higher education sector in England has improved its carbon emissions reduction performance compared to last year, but that it is still off track to achieve the 2020 targets.
According to our projections, if emissions continue to fall at the current rate, universities in England will achieve a 13% reduction by 2020 from the 2005 baseline. This is still far from the 43% HEFCE target, established to help meet the UK’s carbon reduction commitment set out in the Climate Change Act 2008.
Among other key findings, our report shows:
- Total emissions for English universities fell by 7 per cent in 2015/16 to 1,695,557 tCO2e, in comparison to a 10 per cent reduction over the previous 10 years. The sector has now reduced emissions by 17 per cent from the 2005 baseline.
- Of the 127 institutions analysed, only 52 institutions are on track to meet or exceed their targets.
- London Metropolitan University was the best performer in England with a reduction of 57 per cent from 2005.
- The 20 Russell Group universities account for more than half of total sector emissions. However, only 2 are on track to meet their emissions reduction targets: The University of Leeds and University of Birmingham.
- Institutions continue to improve efficiency within their estates, both in relation to income and floor area.
Recalibrate your carbon management strategy
We have extensive experience working with universities. We can help update sustainability strategies and programmes, revise carbon management plans, and assist with low carbon project implementation.
We also offer a wide range of ISO 14001 and ISO 50001 services. Whether you’d like to implement a system, need help transitioning to the 2015 standard, or would like our expert auditors to help with your internal audit, we can help.