Environmental Sustainability Policy (May 2012)
The University of Leicester recognises that its activities have the potential for both positive and negative impacts upon the environment at local, national and global levels. The University acknowledges its responsibility for environmental protection and also aims to contribute to the national commitment to sustainable development and to HEFCE’s sector-based carbon reduction targets. The positive environmental sustainability aspects of research and teaching and learning will be promoted. The University will seek to achieve continual improvement in how it understands and responds to its environmental impacts. The Environmental Sustainability Strategy (2010) has given further structure to this response.
The University commits itself to:
1 Communicate its environmental policy and strategy to staff, students and other stakeholders and to raise awareness amongst these groups of their own environmental responsibilities and requirement to commit to environmental improvements;
2 Comply fully and where possible exceed standards set in relevant UK, EU and international regulatory requirements and agreements;
3 Reduce its carbon footprint through prudent use of fossil fuels (through energy conservation, management and efficiency within buildings) and to switch to low-carbon fuel alternatives where possible;
4 Manage and reduce water consumption;
5 Maintain a travel plan to reduce single occupancy vehicle use to our sites; implement measures to encourage walking, cycling and the use of public transport as principal modes of commuting and business travel for staff, students and visitors;
6 Reduce waste created and where possible to reuse and recycle before responsible disposal of surplus materials; to use recycled and recyclable materials wherever possible;
7 Protect natural habitats and encourage local wildlife and biological diversity of the University’s managed land;
8 Integrate principles of environmental sustainability within all University policies and practices, specifically to those relating to procurement of goods and services;
9 Refurbish and develop the University estate in a manner that avoids negative environmental impacts and enhances the local environment;
10 Avoid or limit wherever practical the use of environmentally-damaging substances, materials and processes;
11 Work with local, regional and national partners to realise environmental projects;
12 Develop Environmental Management Systems (in line with ISO 14001).
Progress on implementing all areas of the policy (and the ES Strategy) will be reviewed annually by (the Estates Infrastructure & Strategy Committee through the Environmental Management Working Group and Sustainable Travel Implementation Group). The policy itself is subject to annual review.
(Version 6. Agreed with EMWG on 10th May 2012)
Professor Sir Robert Burgess