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BSU ENVIRONMENT NEWS June 2010

premier league

BSU-one of the UK’s greenest Universities

BSU wins gold! We win gold in the EcoCampus awards.

Meet the family Launching the new face of our green team

Free furniture

Our Estate and Servies team lead the way


Premier league result for BSU Bath Spa University has been named as one of the UK’s most environmentally friendly universities in a national league table. The People & Planet Green League - published annually by the Times Higher Education supplement - places Bath Spa just outside the top 10 at number 11, having climbed an incredible 51 places since last year! The Green League recognises a university’s commitment to environmental management and performance, ranking institutions in a number of areas including environmental policy, the number of staff dedicated to reducing the environmental impact, and carbon emissions and water use per head. This top 20 ranking highlights the significant work that the Environment Team and many other staff throughout the University have undertaken in recent years, working to develop green initiatives, policies and practices across our two main campuses. A carbon management and reduction plan which sets out how we will reduce carbon emissions by 50% by 2020 is being developed, whilst a strict waste management and recycling policy, and progress with sustainable purchasing practices have also helped to underpin the University’s commitment to the environment. With a current recycling rate of over 60% we have already made significant reductions in the amount of waste we send to landfill. Future projects to reduce this further include composting of food waste from the refectory, which we hope to implement by the start of next academic year. Education and awareness-raising have also been high on the agenda, with various environmentally themed activities undertaken throughout the year. The recent ‘paper amnesty’ is helping reduce paper consumption across the university - we used over 3 million sheets last year - and a food miles event in Moreton got many students thinking about how far their food travels from farm to plate. Vice Chancellor Frank Morgan said: “This is an outstanding result for the University and my congratulations to all staff and students who have embraced a culture of environmental improvement with such enthusiasm”. Follow this link http://peopleandplanet.org/greenleague/table#gl2010_class1st to view details of our scoring and the environmental indicators used.


GOLD! BSU gets Gold and is moving up the league table! Great news to report: BSU has been awarded the Gold award as an indication of progress we’ve made in the EcoCampus scheme. Plus we’ve also moved up on national green league table! EcoCampus is our Environmental Management System (EMS) and the Gold award is recognition for reaching the third phase. Our award was confirmed after a vigorous 2-day audit in February, including site inspections at both Newton Park & Sion Hill. The auditor checked our processes against strict criteria to make sure that we had: • involved staff at the right levels and with the right training • kept our staff and students informed • identified and controlled all activities that do, or could have, an impact on the environment • planned for environmental emergencies We were delighted to pass with flying colours, receiving only three observations but no failures.

This result is thanks to the co-operation of the entire University community, staff and students. The can-do attitude of all operational staff and managers has also been key to this success and to embedding sustainability across the University. Deputy Vice-Chancellor Alun Thomas:

“This is great news for BSU. It shows that we are making progress in reducing our environmental impact while at the same time putting in place structures that will ensure we continue to make improvements”


welcome to the family check out the new faces of our green focus team Green Focus will now be the new face (or faces) of BSU environmental activities. These cool characters which embody our key environmental focus makes up the Green Focus family.

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You’ll start seeing these strange faces all around campus with messages urging us on to become greener everyday. Remember don’t ignore them as they are very friendly and always willing to ‘engage’! 1) energy efficency 2) water efficency 3) sustainable transport 4) waste & recycling 5) biodiversity 6) health, safety & welfare 7) community involvement 8) sustainable purchasing 9) emissions & discharges 10) sustainable construction & refurbishment

£50! It could have been you! At Easter we encouraged those of you who already car-share to register on our Car2Spa site to be in with a chance of winning £50 Amazon voucher. There was a flurry of activity, especially from David Gill who scooped the prize. The best thing about car-sharing, according to David, is the chance to meet other people from across the university. We also handed out two baskets of food to the people guessing the ‘food miles’ at our stall in Moreton. Our lucky winners were students Robyn Lee and Angela Eyton . Both said ‘it really made me think—I’ll definitely look where the food has come from next time I shop’


the power of Switching off We have some budding eco-experts right here under our own roof! A group of second year students on the BSc. Environmental Management course spent the weeks before Easter measuring various environmental indicators at Newton Park, gathering valuable data.

The energy audit in Corston showed that solutions are often more complex than first thought. Whilst there are more efficient models on the market, some of the most energy-intensive equipment is only used infrequently. The savings in electricity use and CO2 emissions by replacing old kit might not actually add up to much. “Its not as simple as we first thought”

Activities included searching through bin-bags to check for contamination (i.e. items in the wrong receptacles – this could be general rubbish in the recycling bins); counting all the lightbulbs in the library; rifling through bins outside the SU to see how much recycling was escaping; and spending 8 hours counting cars that came onto campus at Newton Park… The results give an insight into what’s really going on: • 1087 cars drove onto campus each day • Over 3/4 of the cars had only 1 person in them… wasting an average of 800 passenger spaces each day • Comparison of energy consumption between 2008 and 2009 showed a declining trend • Students living in halls said they felt the Univer sity had advised them how to be energy eficient. (We hope they will continue their good behaviour when they leave halls next year - a fact which might be reinforced by paying their own household bills) • Waste and recycling audits showed high levels of contamination in the SU. • Corston had the lowest levels of contamination of all buildings surveyed. “ Students could make a difference if they paid more attention to recycling”

Weighing up the potential electricity savings is a decision we do before we carry out any energy-saving projects. This shows it is not always sensible to replace equipment before it naturally reaches the end of its life, and it is better ? to focus where we can achieve greater CO2 savings.


estates and domestic services lead the way

ode to Elvis

The Estates team are showing us how to walk the eco-walk by fitting out their new office in Sophia entirely with ‘discarded’ furniture.

Elvis has finally left the building (ok field) He came as an Orphan & left us fully grown He gave us no trouble & never did he moan

Through making use of the Wiki Re-use site and talking to Domestic Services they freed themselves from the need to buy anything new. That’s right…a whole office for 6 people without spending a penny...

His fleece gave us comfort & warmth in our clothes Which may be in your Gowns! So the rumour goes

Amongst the items they sourced were 9 desks with drawer units, 9 office chairs, 4 filing cabinets, a couple of meeting tables....and a hat stand. The next time you start writing out that order for a new desk... Think about what else your Department could do with a spare few thousand pounds. Not only does it make sense economically, it also makes sense environmentally. So if you fancy keeping more of your budget for things other than furniture, there are two ways we can help… email environment@bathspa.ac.uk with what you need and we will ask Domestic Services, or put a post on the Wiki Re-use Site. However if you do need buy new furniture please refer to the Sustainable Purchasing guide on Eproc and on Wiki for guidance on good green credentials to look out for. And since we’ve mentioned Domestic Services, some of the things you might not have realized these hard-working chaps get up to include: • Testing their handyman skills by reconstructing 10 good- as-new chairs from spare parts of broken ones • Donating 6 learning booths and 6 chairs to Culverhay School instead of to landfill • Taking all metal off furniture that has to be discarded, and selling it on to generate income

He was a walking `Recycler` & very cheap to run, & With no capital outlay He gave us loads of fun

Buying all this furniture brand-new would have cost around £4500 • •

Dismantling desks they remove from your offices, so that they can squeeze more into storage Improving facilities for students by replacing tired-looking chairs in lecture rooms and the Residences with newer ones that, yes, they had been asked to throw out.

Carrot tops & peelings-he ate with such Gusto But gradually got old & decided it was time to go We`re finding new ways – To recycle waste food, But Elvis had a good life Enjoying all that he chewed Do your bit for our world As Elvis did every Day, & look after your surroundings Or we`ll all have to pay.

And we bet you thought they just collected your post... Elvis was Phil’s 13 year old sheep which faithfully helped to reduce waste in the Turner’s household by consuming leftover vegetables and food waste until his death – RIP.

Environmental Newsletter, June 2010  

BSU Environmental newsletter, June 2010