Coleg Gwent has a long-standing commitment to act in a sustainable and responsible manner. In 2007 the college made a pledge to embed sustainable development as a core principle of the college. This was achieved by developing a strategic 5 year plan that would see sustainability, environmental management and social responsibility given the same priority as all other management decisions. This plan would embed the Welsh Governments core principles for sustainable development and also ensure significant year on year environmental improvements.
Coleg Gwent has been an EAUC member since 2011!
The college developed and implemented a fully integrated management system. This achievement has resulted in the College being the only Further Education in Wales to achieve ISO 9001, ISO 14001, BS OHSAS 18001 and Level 5 of the Green Dragon Environmental Management Standards. This has ensured that environmental management, sustainability, wellbeing and social responsibility support the development of college policies and procedures.
Through a comprehensive tendering process and the consolidation of the waste contract the college currently has a recycle rate of 86.6%. This substantially exceeds the Welsh Governments sector target of 70% to achieve by 2025. Examples of the recycling conducted include, all food waste (collected, processed and converted into good quality compost) and all metal (segregated, recycled and processed and sent for use for use in the automotive industry).
In 2011 the college was successful with its application to the Carbon Trust Advanced Metering Monitoring and Targeting (AMM&T) project and awarded a grant of £300,000. By installing AMM&T the college is now able to produce accurate and real time data and information on all energy use throughout the college. This was further enhanced in 2012 with the installation of voltage optimisation transformers at all 5 campuses.
The college also introduced methods of ensuring that renewable energy or low emission energy sources were considered during the construction of new buildings and refurbishment projects. The energy in X Block at the Crosskeys Campus is managed via a combination of biomass boilers, solar panels, natural ventilation and low energy lighting. Therefore 55% of the total energy demand for the building is supplied from renewable energy.
The heating at the Blaenau Gwent Learning Campus is delivered via a district heating main from CH&P boilers through a partnership with Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council. The building also benefits from solar panels and has an Intelligent Building Management System that sits on the college network. Over the 5 year plan the college achieved the following reductions in energy consumption.
• Electricity = 31%
• Gas = 25%
• Oil = 56%
• Water = 59%
Social Responsibility and Community Engagement
The new developments at the Crosskeys and the Blaenau Gwent Learning Zone Campuses were not only designed to meet the future needs of the college but the sustainability aspects were instrumental during the planning process. As a result both designs were awarded the BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) standard of ‘excellent’. Both projects involved the redevelopment and regeneration of brown field sites. This resulted in the protection and enhancement of wildlife and the potential for an integrated sustainable drainage system to benefit ecology and landscaping.
Staff and students at all campuses actively promote sustainability and engage with their local community. Students at each of the 5 campuses also established working partnerships with Keep Wales Tidy, SEWTA, Carbon Trust, Plan-it Eco, Woodland Trust and their local councils. Through these partnerships the students were able to work on a number of projects including working with the Estates department to establish small wildflower meadows to improve the insect and bee population at all campuses.
Main Contact Name: Ian Rowe, Manager, Health, Safety & Environment
Main Contact Email & Telephone: firstname.lastname@example.org and 01495 333510
Further information/website: www.coleggwent.ac.uk
Share with us: www.twitter.com/coleggwent www.facebook.com/ColegGwent