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University of Warwick finalists in sustainability awards for universities and colleges - Green Gown Awards 2021

We're pleased to share that our hard work towards sustainability as individuals, in our research and teaching, as well as how we run and develop the University in the long run, has been recognised in this year's Green Gown Awards.

It has been announced that the University is a finalist in three categories:

Benefitting Society

This category is all about how institutions like our University act as anchors in their communities and cities, and benefit society in many ways. This category captures the powerful and innovative ways education institutions are realising their purpose in today’s society to benefit the lives of individuals, communities and the wider society.

Here at Warwick, our work towards closing the loop of circular economy (an economic system that tackles global challenges like climate change, biodiversity loss, waste, and pollution) during the pandemic to support local community has been recognised.

2030 Climate Action

This category focuses on the steps institutions are taking and how they're planning to reach their targets.

Carbon reduction and adaptation to the effects of climate change are essential for institutional resilience and business continuity. Universities and colleges are exposed to significant climate risks and responsibilities to meet targets and institutions have to be taking bold steps to meet these targets while ensuring student outcomes and satisfaction are maintained.

Warwick has received recognition for carbon emissions removal, aligning engineering decarbonisation with science based targets.

Campus of the Future

This category recognises pathfinding campus and learning innovation to improve the student experience. Traditional campus and learning processes are challenged and advances in internet connectivity, artificial intelligence and augmented reality have scope to transform campuses and learning into more immersive and more sustainable experiences. Similarly, the digital revolution is driving smart buildings, intelligent campuses and step-change advances across all aspects of an institution giving students a richer experience of teaching and learning.

Next-generation campuses provide benefits such as enabling institutions to reduce their impact by monitoring and managing energy use in real time, streamline waste management to moving supplies around site more efficiently as well as improving student and staff well-being.

At Warwick, we have strived to ensure our latest campus developments are more sustainable through:

  • 80% reduction on deliveries to site (includes less disruption to local traffic routes and reduction in carbon)
  • 30% reduction in on site labour (includes less need for journeys to site, less car parking, less waste and works undertaken in factories with closer quality control)
  • 370 tonnes of Carbon dioxide captures (includes the timber frame, manufacture and transport)

The University of Warwick’s Provost Chris Ennew welcomed this announcement and reiterated that:

“We have a responsibility as a community and organisation to moderate our individual actions, our research and teaching, and how we run and develop our University. We aim to reach net zero carbon from our direct emissions and the energy we buy by 2030, something that will need the continued commitment of Government and partners, in addition to the University looking inwardly at our own policies, processes and behaviours."

Iain Patton, CEO, of EAUC (The Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges) said:

"It is clear from the number and quality of applications, that sustainability and the now irreversible sustainability movement is not only resilient but profoundly energised, opportunistic and dynamic! UK and Irish universities and colleges have turned Covid 19 challenges into opportunities and ensured that every change is a change for sustainability. A reset of our economic and social foundations is happening and the Green Gown Awards are all the more important to inspire and scale change for sustainability. Congratulations to all our Finalists."

This year's winners for UK and Ireland Green Gown Awards will be announced in November 2021.