University of London Annual Sustainability Report 2018–2019

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University of London Annual Sustainability Report


1858 Charter of the University of London, signed by Queen Victoria

The University of London


he University of London was founded in 1836 on principles of equality. We were the first university to admit students regardless of their gender, race or religion and the first to admit women to study degree programmes. We were also the first institution to offer students the opportunity to study wherever they were in the world providing access to outstanding higher education irrespective of distance; something that is still at the heart of our operations today. The University of London is a federation of 17 independent member institutions: Birkbeck, University of London  •  City, University of London  •  The Courtauld Institute of Art  •  Goldsmiths, University of London  •  The Institute of Cancer Research  •  King’s College London  •  London Business School  •  The London School of Economics and Political Science  •  London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine  •  Queen Mary University of London  •  Royal Academy of Music  •  The Royal Central School of Speech & Drama  •  Royal Holloway, University of London  •  The Royal Veterinary College  •  St George’s, University of London  •  SOAS, University of London   •  UCL The University is also home to highly acclaimed research Institutes. The University, provides a suite of innovative high-quality academic and professional services to member institutions and other universities. These include the University of London Worldwide, a collaboration among member institutions to provide distance and flexible learning to over 50,000 students in 180 countries; the School of Advanced Study with its nine research institutes, a nationally funded resource for the promotion and facilitation of research in the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences; the University of London Institute in Paris, a specialised institution which provides research-led teaching from experts in their field; Senate House Library with its unique research collections in the Arts and Humanities; CoSector, a trusted provider for digital, IT infrastructure, graduate careers and housing services for students, providers of learning as well as clients from beyond the sector; The Careers Group, the oldest and largest HE Careers Services catering to over 100,000 students and more than 100 institutions in the UK. The University is also proud custodian of valuable property portfolio in Bloomsbury including the iconic Senate House design by Charles Holden and Charles Clore House, designed by Sir Denys Lasdun. Sustainability Report 2018–2019

Statement from

Dr Ghazwa Alwani-Starr


am delighted to see the continued progress the University of London has made over the last year in our drive to become a more sustainable organisation. We have always seen ourselves as an institution leading the way for positive change and this is clearly reflected in the achievements laid out in this report. The 2018–19 academic year marked the 150th anniversary of the first women being admitted to study at the University of London, making us the first university to take this vital step in increasing access to education. It is with this history of innovation and leadership that we look to the greatest challenge of the modern age, the climate crisis.

Dr Ghazwa Alwani-Starr, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Strategy, Planning and Partnerships; and Director of Property and Facilities Management

We are very proud to have continued to achieve our aim to cut carbon emissions across our estate. This year we can announce that we have reduced our emissions by 51% against our 2010 baseline, and have plans in place to continue these reductions into the future. It’s wonderful to see how all areas of the University are working together toward the common goal of protecting the environment. As a truly global organisation, the University is acutely aware of the importance of collaboration at all levels in order to have a positive impact. We continue to work hard to foster a tight knit community that ensures sustainability is always on the agenda and are pleased with how far we have already come. Finally, I would like to thank the Sustainability team for their continued hard work and for producing this report which allows the wider community an insight into all the environmental efforts being made across the University. I also wish to extend this gratitude to all our staff and students for their hard work and support that allows the University of London to continue to be the pioneer it historically has been.

Sustainability Report 2018–2019



Sustainability Report 2018–2019

Contents 6 Scope 8

Energy and carbon

12 Water 13 Waste 14

Travel and transport

16 Biodiversity 17 Food 18

Conferencing and events


University of London Worldwide


Reduce the Juice


Community and engagement


Staff engagement

27 Accreditation

Sustainability Report 2018–2019


2018–19 in Numbers The University’s energy mix Solar






Anaerobic Digestion





Carbon emissions reduction % 2017–2018 in carbon Reduced by against our 2010 baseline %



Installed two new



solar PV arrays


Sustainability Report 2018–2019

% of International Hall’s enegry derived from solar array



Non-residential water consumption

Residential water consumption

Reduced by Reduced by

q 18,000 m³ Total annual waste volume




Percentage of staff who either cycle or use public transport to get to work



Reduced by


q 11,000


100% of eggs are free range

University of London Worldwide


of milk is organic

tonnes of CO2e saved through WW programme

Reduce the juice

Staff Champions

4 kWh 845,901 Worked with


Halls of Residence saved

of energy

Non-UoL halls saved



Staff Champions

litres of water

Sustainability Report 2018–2019




he University of London is made up of 17 member institutions. However, all of the institutions are self-governing, many of them having their own Sustainability Teams and individual Sustainability Reports Therefore, this report will focus on the sustainability achievements of the UK based areas of the Central University, as outlined on the inside of the cover page of this report, throughout the 2018–2019 academic year.


Sustainability Report 2018–2019

University of London’s collaboration with United Nations Sustainable Development Goals


ow more than ever our planet needs us to work collaboratively for a better future. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a blueprint laid out by the United Nations to achieve a more sustainable future for all. They address the global challenges we face and as a result require the collaboration of all sectors of society, including higher education. Within this report we will sign post when areas of our activities contribute to achieving one or more of the Sustainable Development Goals so that you, the reader, can clearly see our contributions. Our work toward each goal will be denoted at the end of each section by the inclusion of the relevant SDG symbol.

Materiality This report has been written to give our stakeholders a transparent and detailed overview into the University’s sustainable activities. With this in mind, every stakeholder was engaged and considered to ensure the report retained relevance and accuracy. Key sustainable impact areas were determined and these formed the core structure of this document.

Sustainability Report 2018–2019


100% of the University of London’s electricity is generated from renewable sources.


n the 2018–19 academic year we reduced our carbon emissions to 7,236 tonnes of CO2e, achieving a 51% reduction against our 2010 baseline – we achieved a massive 4% reduction from last year! We have had a busy year of implementing carbon reduction measures across our whole estate. We worked alongside the Bouygues Energy Team to implement a £2.5million Energy Performance Contract (EPC) across four of our core buildings: Senate House, Stewart House, College Hall and International Hall. Within the EPC project we installed two solar arrays on the roofs of Senate House and International Hall, operating at 50kWp and 45kWp respectively. They are ‘behind the meter’ solar arrays, meaning that they feed into and power our own buildings, giving us localised energy, International Hall now derives 3.4% of its total electricity demand from its solar array. Senate House, College Hall and International Hall all received upgraded lighting with the installation of LEDs with PIR sensors throughout each building. Across these sites we also reinsulated the plant within our plant rooms to further reduce energy wastage across our estate.

Senate House Solar Array

The University’s energy mix Anaerobic digestion 1.5% Wind 0.8% Thermal 7.3%

Annual reductions in carbon emissions (CO2e) 16 14 12

Hydro 21.3%

10 8


Sustainability Report 2018–2019







2012–2013 2013–2014



Solar PV 69.1%





Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (IALS), Charles Clore House

Energy and carbon


n the final measure within the EPC project we upgraded our Building Management System (BMS). The new system allows us to more effectively ensure the efficient running of our heating systems and provides us with the ability to manage them centrally. We have also upgraded the thermostatic controls across Senate House giving us improved temperature controls across the building. Through the EPC project, the University expects to save 800 tonnes of CO2e annually. That equates to 5% of our 2010 baseline. It has also been great to see our Capital Projects team including energy conservation measures within their projects. While carrying out routine mechanical, electrical and plumbing works in Nutford House and Connaught Hall they improved the energy efficiency of both buildings through BMS, lighting upgrades and improved insulation. Furthermore, our iconic IALS building which was undergoing an extensive refurbishment throughout the year, remains on track to achieve SKA gold, having targeted many energy conservation measures.

Sustainability Report 2018–2019


Bloomsbury Heat and Power Consortium – upgrading our district heating network


ur involvement with the Bloomsbury Heat and Power Consortium (BHPC) continues, working with our neighbouring universities UCL, Birkbeck and SOAS to upgrade our shared district heating system. The network currently provides low carbon heat and electricity for IALS and heat for Stewart House, the Warburg Institute, College Hall and Student Central. Throughout 2018–19 we continued work with the other universities to explore the feasibility of achieving zero carbon on the network through a phased approach. Early modelling suggests that an 86% reduction in carbon emissions could be achieved from the first phase of the upgrade.

Goods and Services

Capital Goods

Scope 2 – Indirect Scope 3 – Indirect Scope 1 – Direct

Purchased Energy

Distribution Waste

Staff Travel

Upstream Activities


District heating networks are fundamental to the Greater London Authority’s (GLA) 2050 zero carbon target, connecting buildings to low cost, low carbon, renewable energy.

Sustainability Report 2018–2019


Scope 3 – Indirect

Use of Product

Leased Assets


End of Life Waste

Franchises Vehicles

The University


Downstream Activities

The Zero Carbon Challenge event


n October 2018 the Sustainability team hosted the Zero Carbon Challenge event at Senate House. The event brought together over 200 leading zero carbon thinkers and decision makers from over 30 UK universities, local government and architectural and design practices to tackle the zero carbon challenge and crowd source the zero carbon strategy for the University of London. Shirley Rodrigez, the GLAs Deputy Mayor for Environment and Energy, opened the event, grounding the University’s efforts within the context of London’s Zero Carbon commitment. This was followed by presentations on a range of successful low carbon buildings from across and beyond the sector. The afternoon saw all the delegates break out into working groups to develop approaches to achieving zero carbon in each of our buildings.

Scope 1 emissions: Direct emissions from owned or controlled sources

Scope 2 emissions: Indirect emissions from the generation of purchased energy

Scope 3 emissions: All indirect emissions (not included in scope 2) that occur in the value chain of the reporting company, including both upstream and downstream emissions

The event was extremely well received as it acted as a great melting pot for idea generation by bringing together a variety of estates experts in one room. Following the event, the University’s Sustainability team created the Zero Carbon Estates handbook. The document captured much of the learning and discussion from the day and put it alongside the University’s initial strategy to achieve net zero operational carbon by 2036. Furthermore, the handbook generated global media coverage and was praised for its innovative crowd sourcing approach. You can download a copy of the handbook here. In an effort to maintain the momentum generated at the event the University formed the Zero Carbon Universities Coalition. In 2019–20 we hope to replicate our previous success by once again bringing together those involved for another day of collaboration and knowledge sharing. Following the achievements in reducing our Scope 1 and two carbon emissions and developing a strategy to achieve zero carbon, in the 2019–2020 academic year we intend to carry out a collaborative exercise across the University to quantify our Scope 3 carbon emissions. From this, we hope to develop targets and measures to reduce our Scope 3 emissions.

Sustainability Report 2018–2019 Visual minutes from the Zero Carbon Challenge Event




n recent years the University has been upgrading its estate and we have been working to implement water conservation measures in these works. During 2018–2019, we successfully implemented a range of water reduction measures in the context of the IALS building refurbishment. These works included measures such as: efficient taps, low flush WCs, sanitary supply shut off, water management software and leakage detection devices. This will help us to achieve SKA Gold in this project and help safeguard the world’s most precious resource. In the 2018–19 academic year we reduced our non-residential water consumption by 18,000m³ and our residential water consumption by 11,000m³. That’s a total reduction of 29,000m³, saving the University enough water to fill 11.6 Olympic size swimming pools! We hope to work with Thames Water in 2019–2020 to implement further water saving measures across the estate to further reduce our water consumption.


Total water consumption 2017–2018

166,477 m3

Total water consumption 2018–2019

137, 202 m3

Residential water consumption 2017–2018

89,654 m3

Residential water consumption 2018–2019

78,859 m3

Non-residential water consumption 2017–2018

76,823 m3

Non-residential water consumption 2018–2019

58,343 m3

Sustainability Report 2018–2019


Waste breakdown Total non-recyled 35.39%


t the University of London we are committed to reducing waste throughout our operations. In instances where waste is unavoidable we implement the waste hierarchy as part of our effective waste management procedure to ensure that it is dealt with in a responsible manner.

Reduce Reuse Repair Recycle Recover Dispose

Through collaboration with our waste contractor, we continue to ensure that 0% of our waste goes to landfill. Instead we reduce, re-use, recycle and recover all our waste. In 2018–19 the University saw a 32 tonne reduction in waste, reducing our total annual waste volume to 1,126 tonnes. However, our percentage of recycled waste fell by 4% within the past year, with 65% of the waste on our estate being recycled. This makes it unlikely that the University will meet its target of recycling 80% of all waste by 2020. Therefore the decision was taken to extend this target to 2025.

Total food waste 14.75%

Total recycled 49.84%

Total waste 2017–2018

1,158.2 tonnes

Total waste 2018–2019

1,125.88 tonnes

In light of this extension, the University will work throughout 2019–20 to develop a new strategy to reduce our total waste volumes, something we hadn’t tracked to date, and increase the percentage of waste we recycle. To do this we intend to work collaboratively with our waste contractor and procurement team to set achievable yet Challenging targets. Our in-house cafeteria located in Senate House is one of our recycling hubs, home to our three nonresidential waste streams (food waste, mixed recycling and last resort). All last resort bins have been removed from our offices and placed in the cafeteria and at printer points in an effort to reduce convenience waste and encourage sustainable behaviours among staff and visitors.

Plastics The University has already made steps toward removing plastic from its operations with the introduction of our popular KeepCups, removing plastic bags from our cafeteria, cafes and shop and ceasing the distribution of plastic water bottles at events hosted at the University. We have a bold vision to make single plastics disappear completely. In 2019–20 the University will develop a strategy to update our cafeteria’s operations, as we believe preventing waste is always better than reuse or recycle.

Sustainability Report 2018–2019


Travel and transport


ue to our outstanding central London location we have unrivalled access to public transport. We’re a 20 minute walk from Kings Cross station and 15 minutes from Euston. We’re also spoiled for choice with tube stations: Goodge Street (Northern line) Russell Square (Piccadilly line) and Tottenham Court Road (Central and Northern lines) are under a 10 minute walk from Senate House and Euston Square (Metropolitan, Circle and District lines) Holborn (Central and Piccadilly lines) and Warren Street (Northern and Victoria lines) are all under a 15 minute walk away. This is not to mention the countless bus and cycle routes that are on our doorstep. Due to our unrivalled access to public transport links over 86% of staff use public transport to travel to work and another 10% cycle. Less than 1% of our staff use cars or motorbikes to commute to work. In the 2019–20 academic year, we will be re-commencing the University’s bi-annual travel survey to keep our data on staff travel up to date. The intention is to also use this data to inform our future work quantifying the University’s scope three carbon emissions.


Warren Street Station

Eusto St

Goodge Street Station i

r me

rt Mo


Sustainability Report 2018–2019


Kings Cross Station

St Pancras Station

The British Library

Euston Station




e lac nP

r bu Wo

o nR

Tavistock Square

on Square tation


e lac P ck o t vis Ta

10 0m mins mi

5m min miiin ins ns ns

et tre rS we Go g rrin

15 1 5 mi min m iins ns

la nP


3 mins min mi nss



Russell Square

Russell Square Station

ut ha mp n to w Ro

n tte To



m ha

The British Museum


rt R

u Co d

Holborn Station treet Oxford S

Tottenham Court Road Station

Key University of London campus Bus stop

Tube Station

Rail Station



ees are the earth’s predominant pollinator, pollinating a third of all the food eaten globally and as such are crucial to the resilience and sustainability of our ecosystem. Here at the University of London we know this and wanted to give bees a home in the urban jungle of our capital city.

Beehives on our IALS building

That is why on the roof of our IALS building you will find three bee hives. To encourage and aid their pollination we have planted a variety of bee friendly flowers across our estate. In 2018–19 our bees produced 170 pots of honey and we continued our annual bee training course and trained another ten bee keepers among our staff. We also have our honey tested each year to identify the pollenmix it is made up of. Below are the test results from our summer 2019 batch. We’re very lucky to be surrounded by green spaces in Bloomsbury with Russell Square to our east, Malet Street gardens to our west, Gordon Square to our north and Woburn and Torrington Square amongst our buildings. Staff and students are encouraged to make the most of the local parks for meetings, catch-ups and during breaks. We also run biodiversity walks around our squares and green spaces in collaboration with our HR Team during wellbeing week. During these walks staff are taken around our green spaces and helped to identify the plants and animals they encounter. In 2019–20 we plan to continue to work with our local stakeholders to develop plans for the green spaces in the Bloomsbury area and potentially work together to create a Wild Bloomsbury strategy.

University of London Honey – where does it come from? Sweet Chestnut


Tree of Heaven

15% 10%

Blackberry Cytisus and Genista shrubs

8% 8% 7% Our green spaces 5% Tavistock Square 5%

Wildflowers Maple Cherry Butterfly Bush

3% 2% each 2% each 2% each 2% each 2%

Hawthorn Oak, Buckthorn Pear, Dogrose Willow, Privet Lime, Dogwood Other August 2019



Russell Square Woburn Square

Gordon Square Torrington Square Sunken Garden


Sustainability Report 2018–2019

Bedford Square



t the University of London we’re aware of the impact our food choices have on global emissions and work hard at every point in the supply chain to ensure our own emissions are minimised as much as possible. We work closely with our supplier, Aramark, to ensure our food is produced locally to minimise our food miles. The University has achieved a Foodforlife bronze award, meaning we uphold our sustainable food and Fairtrade policies and that 100% of our milk is organic, 100% of our eggs are free range and we use Red Tractor certified meat and MSC certified fish.

7 8 15 11

For every meal that contains meat, our cafeteria ensures there is a quality vegetarian option available and we’re working hard to incorporate more vegan options into our offerings. In 2020 we’re launching our new vegan menu.

13 6


4 16 17 14 2 1 10 5 6 18 12 159

Aramark local suppliers Fruit and Veg


Bakery 11

Express Baker, Dumfries


James Knight of Mayfair, London


Premier Fruits, London


Sheringham Fine Foods, London


Worcester Produce, Worcestershire



Accent Fresh, West Norfolk


Delifresh, Bradford


Chegworth Valley, London


Freshways, London


Harvey and Brockless, London and Scotland

Meat 6

Nigel Fredericks Butchers, London and East Midlands

Specialist Foods Fish


Campbell Brothers Fish, Edinburgh


Ritter Courivaud, Middlesex


Campbells, Edinburgh


Leathams, London


Fish 9

Daily Fish Suppies, London


Jascots, London


James Knight of Mayfiar, London


Bibendum, London

Sustainability Report 2018–2019


Conferencing and events

Senate House

Senate House is the University of London’s headquarter and serves as a prestigious conference venue in central London, providing elegant event rooms, breakout spaces and even filming locations. We are uniquely located in central London reducing the needs for delegates to travel to events by car, reducing emissions related to our events.

Audio and visual The University has excellent in-house audio and visual technical equipment and video conferencing facilities reducing the need to capabilities

transport heavy equipment and enabling an innovative alternative to physical attendance. Again reducing the emissions from events run in our space.

Reduced paper consumption

We’ve worked hard to reduce the amount of paper used at our conferences and events. We never use paper to promote our events and our booking system and means of correspondence are completely digital. When we provide delegate packs the paper used is made from recycled materials and we actively encourage it to be recycled afterwards. We also provide delegates with reusable name badges that we collect at the end of each event ready to use next time.

To book an event in our sustainable spaces look at our website or email or call 020 7862 8127


Sustainability Report 2018–2019

Food consumption We’re very aware of food consumption’s role in climate change and

have endeavoured to improve our offerings in terms of environmental impact. We do not serve unhealthy food and drinks at our events and conferences, opting to serve healthy balanced meals with vegetarian options being prioritised. In 2020 we will launch our brand new vegan menu which will increase our offering and reduce our catering carbon footprint. This new menu runs on the basis that meat free is never an alternative, but a core part of the University’s quality offering.

Reduction in our The University has also strived to reduce the waste that is generated through our events. We have stopped providing plastic water bottles waste

to delegates and instead ensure water is freely available at our water stations. We only provide reusable cutlery and we have changed catering suppliers to ensure the food packaging we buy in is fully recyclable.

The University is working hard to rid our catering operations of single use plastics.

Senate House as a Due to Senate House’s art deco aesthetic it is often used by film and TV shows to stand in for New York, in fact some scenes from the film location Batman franchise were filmed here! This reduces any unnecessary flights over the pond, reducing carbon emissions.

Other notable mentions that use Senate House and its surrounding gardens as a backdrop include: Killing Eve, Bodyguard, Patrick Melrose and James Bond even turned our Macmillan Hall into airport security for the next instalment of the franchise. Read more about Senate House on the screen here.

Sustainability Report 2018–2019


University of London Worldwide


he University of London Worldwide programmes have been established in 1858 and work today with the University’s internationally renowned member institutions to offer world class education via distance and flexible learning and face-to-face classes at local teaching centres. The programmes have over 50,000 students in more than 190 countries.

Notable Worldwide Alumni

The innovative and unique way of learning enables students with the opportunity to study for a world-class degree without leaving their home country, making our high standard of education accessible to those that otherwise would not have the means to travel to the United Kingdom. Furthermore, from an environmental perspective our ability to reach students in their home countries reduces the need for international travel. In 2018–2019 the programme had 50,755 students studying around the world, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. Based on the presumption that each student would take one return trip from their home country to London each year if they studied on our campus, our unique operation has saved a colossal 102,873.63 tonnes of CO2e. That is over 14 times the carbon emitted from our estate annually!


Sustainability Report 2018–2019

South Africa The Good News,

The Worldwide approach enables thousands of people the opportunity to study around their own schedule regardless of their existing commitments and where they are in the world; this is improving access to education in practice.

2.7% 4.4% 3.9% 9.4% 8.1% 19% 19.04% 33.35%

(1k+) Middle East (2k+) Caribbean (1k+) Eastern Europe (4k+) Africa (4k+) Americas (9k+) Western Europe (9k+) South Asia (16k+) Asia Pacific

Sustainability Report 2018–2019


Reduce the Juice


educe the Juice is a UK wide student-facing sustainability engagement programme developed and delivered by the University of London Sustainability team. We aim to drive pro-environmental behaviour change in our halls of residence in order to promote sustainable consumption and reduce carbon emissions. Throughout 2018–19 we delivered Reduce the Juice at four higher education institutions: University College London (UCL), London School of Economics (LSE), Goodenough College and across our own University of London intercollegiate halls of residences. The initiative has three key themes: saving energy, saving water and reducing waste. It is run as a competition, with a cash prize for the most sustainable hall. In 2018–19 the winning halls of residence chose to run social events, with pizza parties always being a popular choice, made donations to charity and even purchased gym equipment. Our team visits every one of the 30 competing halls of residence prior to the competitions in each of the key themes. During the visits they play games and run mini-competitions to engage with students face-to-face and advise them on the key behavioural changes they can personally make to lower the environmental impact of their residence. Throughout 2018–19 our team of engagement officers interacted directly with 7,876 students as well as thousands more via our social media channels. On average, that represented 45% of all students across the participating halls of residence. Our engagements in UCL and LSE were particularly fruitful with 60% and 59% of residents engaged respectively. In the 2018–2019 academic year the halls of residence collectively saved 845,901kWh. That’s enough energy to power 211 homes in the UK for a whole year. Collectively, Goodenough College, UCL and LSE halls saved 929,500 litres during their water sprint. That’s enough water to keep the whole population of Edinburgh hydrated for a day.


Sustainability Report 2018–2019

Interview with

Georgi Kirkov

Temporary Sustainability Engagement Officer What is your experience with Reduce the Juice? I first learnt about Reduce the Juice in 2017 as a resident at International Hall. I subsequently volunteered and became a Sustainability Engagement and Action Leader (SEAL). In 2018 I became a part-time member of the University of London Sustainability team as a Sustainability Engagement Officer. My main responsibilities are to deliver a variety of Reduce the Juice sustainabilityfocused engagements and activities in participating universities and halls of residence. In January of this year, I started a new part-time role within the UoL Sustainability team, taking on more responsibilities including directly supporting the development of the project and increasing its reach and impact, specifically across the UoL intercollegiate halls. What have you learnt from your involvement with reduce the juice? Besides enriching my understanding of a wide range of sustainability and environmental topics, as well as behavioural science within the context of higher education and halls of residence, Reduce the Juice has helped expand my general knowledge through meaningful engagement and interactions with hundreds of students and staff from around the world. What do you like about Reduce the Juice? I fundamentally believe in the project’s concept. I love the tangible sustainability and behavioural changes the project achieves, as well as the engaging ways it facilitates sustainability and environment-related discussions and interactions. The programme has truly great potential and it gives me great joy and fulfilment to be part of the team working on improving and expanding the project further. How do you think the programme helps students? Aside from raising awareness about sustainability, environmentrelated topics and specific issues close to the lives of students in halls it incentivises student action through its sustainability prize competitions. The Reduce the Juice team, together with the entire Sustainability team, does a great job of listening to students’ sustainability ideas in relation to their halls and does the utmost to put these into practice. Furthermore, Reduce the Juice provides volunteering and training (via its SEALs network), as well as paid part-time opportunities. The programme creates communities of like-minded students and staff across participating universities and student halls. How has working with reduce the juice assisted your development? Reduce the Juice has tremendously improved my interpersonal, communication and campaigning skills. For instance, there are often only a few seconds to get the attention of students passing by during our engagements, so efficient and creative approaches for interacting are crucial. My teamwork skills have also improved through performing the vast majority of engagement shifts together with a colleague. More recently, I have been increasingly presented with diverse opportunities to further develop and utilise my leadership, organisational, planning, networking and social media skills.

Sustainability Report 2018–2019


Community and Engagement


he University of London are active members of the London Environmental Group (LUEG) and the Environmental Association of Universities and Colleges (EAUC), a collaborative network which shares knowledge and best practise in Sustainability across the higher education sector.

Leading Women 2018 marked 150 years since nine women were admitted to study at the University of London. This was the first time in the United Kingdom women had gained access to a university education. It marked an immensely significant moment for both women and society and as such, throughout 2018, we celebrated the University’s long history of supporting women within higher education by hosting a range of activities. These included pop-up exhibitions and talks, panel debates, festivals, the unveiling of a new sculpture in Bloomsbury and the granting of 150 scholarships to women all around the world. The higher education sector, including the University of London, has a long way to go when it comes to gender equality but our celebration renewed our commitment to continue our pursuit of education for all.

‘ At the University of London, we take our commitment to women’s education seriously and we have spread this ethos around the world where our distance and flexible programmes enable women to study around family and work life.’ Professor Mary Stiasny University of London Pro Vice-Chancellor (International)


Sustainability Report 2018–2019

Festivals Two annual festivals put Senate House into the spotlight of cultural and public engagement activities.

Bloomsbury Festival The University partners with the Bloomsbury Festival to celebrate the area’s pioneering creativity, presenting a fantastic programme of arts, science, literature, performance, discussion and reflection. Bringing together the local community to celebrate the vibrant, forward thinkers we have in this area of London. The festival’s main aim is to foster creative development and community engagement within Bloomsbury, helping foster original ideas and celebrating differences.

Being Human Festival – Origins and Endings Led by the School of Advanced Study the Being Human festival is the UK’s only national humanities festival. In 2018, over events took place in Bloomsbury, bringing to life the latest research in history, literature, philosophy, archaeology and languages. We saw attendance of over 20,000 people alongside the international events in Paris and Rome. The festival strives to be a platform in which cutting edge research is presented to non-specialist audiences in an accessible, engaging and fun manner. The 2018 festival saw an exploration into the theme of ‘origins and endings’, examining the fundamentals of what it means to be human and what humans manage to create from their beginning to their end, think societies, empires, languages, stories and cultures.

Sustainability Report 2018–2019


Staff Engagement


ll new starters at the University receive a sustainability induction to ensure all staff actively engage to promote sustainability throughout their time at the University.

We have 27 staff champions from across the organisation. Our team of champions help us to communicate our sustainability messages across departments, feedback on what more we could be doing and drive departmental behaviour change. In 2019 we also hosted our Celebration of Sustainability, a whole month of events and activities to celebrate the University’s continued commitment to sustainability, our success stories and engage our hard working staff. We based each week of activities around six key areas where the University directly impacts on the environment: energy, transport, biodiversity, food and the UoL Masterplan. The month long celebration was extremely well received with a large number of staff getting involved. The Sustainability team have big plans to expand and develop our staff champions in 2020, so watch this space.


Sustainability Report 2018–2019

Our charities


uring the academic year the University London has collaborated with a number of different charities for the benefit of our local community. Through our partnership with CARE International, an organisation that fights poverty and injustice in the world’s most vulnerable places, we raised almost £2,000 with fundraising events including two auction’s, a bake sale, two staff choir concerts, staff winter choir, bucket collections at tube stations and then tins around Senate House. Our two new charity partners are Street Child, who work to protect children living in the world’s poorest countries and The Children’s Literacy Society, who work with the most disadvantaged children in society to help close their literacy gap. So far we have raised over £1500 with fundraising events such as raffles, auctions, a staff choir concert and bucket collections at tube stations, and we hope to see this figure rise.



n 2018–19 the University maintained its ISO 14001 accreditation, ensuring our environmental management system is effective and compliant with regulatory requirements. Carrying out audits across our estate enables us to maintain our high environmental standards whilst constantly improving the way we operate, creating a forward thinking and innovative ethos throughout. During our internal audits in 2019, we identified an area of outstanding good practice at Nutford House, one of our catered halls of residence. There Suzanne, the halls catering manager, went above and beyond the requirements of her role to tackle the issue of single use plastics. She removed single use cutlery and plastic serving equipment from operations and encouraged students who wanted second helpings to bring their own Tupperware rather than using disposable boxes that were previously on offer. In 2019–20 we hope to roll out this amazing idea to the rest of our estate and further reduce the the volume of single use plastic and waste created through our operations.

Sustainability Report 2018–2019


For further details on the University of London’s Sustainability work please contact University of London Senate House Malet Street London WC1E 7HU UK Telephone: +44 (0)20 7862 8000

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If you would like visual minutes like those we had at our Zero Carbon Challenge Event at your conference, please contact Woven Ink.

This annual report is available in alternative formats upon request. Please contact

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