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Eco-friendly Glyndwr University ‘poised to be a leader’ in carbon management

April 18 2013

 

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Glyndwr University is “poised to be a leader” in carbon management after slashing emissions by 6%.

The university, which has campuses in Wrexham, St Asaph and Northop, moved 45 places up the Green League ranking, putting it among the most eco-friendly higher education institutions in the UK.

Glyndwr University is targeting a 20% reduction in emissions by 2015, and 34% by 2020.

A report by the Carbon Trust in Wales and Hefcw, the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales, praised Glyndwr for achieving the savings.

Prepared by Verco, the Higher Education Carbon Management Review of Welsh universities assessed its current status and commitment towards carbon management across the sector.

Vice-Chancellor Michael Scott welcomed the report and praised the university’s energy management team.

Prof Scott said: “This is fabulous news. At Glyndwr University we know how important it is to reduce our carbon footprint, now and in the future.

“I am pleased with the results and would like to thank everyone for their hard work in achieving this.”

Glyndwr’s energy and maintenance manager Paul Wright said the university will strive to maintain and improve on its performance last year.

He said: “Low-cost actions have included the refurbishment of water efficiency equipment, improved controls for electrical equipment and the gas boiler as well as upgrades to lighting.

“The university is also considering a programme of investment in new equipment which will deliver long-term savings.

Energy and sustainability assistant Fiona Williams added: “We’re proud of the progress made so far and will continue working hard to achieve and try to surpass our targets.”

The report revealed a new carbon management team had been in place at Glyndwr University since mid-2011.

Energy data is currently collected manually and a subcontractor is used to assist with monitoring and targeting, although this is soon to be replaced by a Digital Energy aM&T system which is being commissioned.

The review added: “A Green Champion’s network was established in late 2011, and more extended behaviour change campaigns are planned once the aM&T system is fully functioning.

“Overall, Glyndwr prepared a good Carbon Management Plan and appears poised to be a leader in carbon management amongst HEI's in Wales, provided that sufficient financial and human resources are maintained through the plan period.”

The review found the HE sector in Wales is in a period of transition as it adapts to the changes in student tuition fees and increasing competition for students.

There are no explicit incentives or penalties to encourage carbon or energy management, though the 3% carbon reduction target influences a university’s environmental aims and is good for its “reputation” going forward.

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