Carbon-cutting edge

Lancaster University is set to cut its carbon footprint and reduce its energy bills by joining phase four of the Carbon Trust’s Higher Education Carbon Management (HECM) programme.

Lancaster is one of 18 universities participating in the latest phase of the programme, with participants aiming to collectively cut their carbon emissions by 72,000 tonnes and energy costs by £8.1m.

Through the first three phases of the HECM programme, the Carbon Trust had already worked with 50 universities, identifying annual savings of more than £22m and 185,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide. Many of the new participants can expect to reduce their energy bills by up to 20 per cent.

Carbon Trust public sector manager Tom Cumberlege said: ‘The sector spends more than £200m every year on energy and when you consider that around 2.5 per cent of the average university’s annual budget is spent on energy the financial and environmental incentives to cut carbon are clear.’

The HECM programme is designed to deliver improved energy management of academic, accommodation and leisure buildings and vehicle fleets.

A web-based manual that gives detailed guidance on the HECM’s processes and technical advice is offered to support the universities.

Jonathan Mills, Lancaster University environment and sustainability manager, said: ‘We are looking forward to reducing our energy bills, cutting our carbon footprint and therefore combating climate change.’