University of Bradford - Ecoversity

Ecoversity is the University of Bradford’s programme of embedding sustainable development into the entire institution.

This ambitious programme is creating systemic change in the University's practices, behaviours and norms. It covers sustainability performance - embedding education for sustainable development in the learning experience of ALL students; and prioritising and advocating social and ethical responsibility, well-being and community engagement. Most significantly it seeks to shift the institutional culture to where sustainable development becomes the norm, rather than an exception or bolt-on.

Ecoversity – the next part of the journey

Embedding of sustainability into a core part of the institutions activities is the challenge the University is now trying to work towards.

Our History

The Ecoversity programme started in 2005 and has expanded into a widescale programme. Tackling sustainability more broadly, it includes wellbeing, social and economic factors.

The programme has won many awards including:

• Sector awards: 1st Class Green League, Gold UTC and Green Gown Awards, Times Higher (Twice)
• National Awards: BiTC, RICS, Energy and CIBSE awards
• International Awards: Sustainable Campus Network sustainability awards.

Major achievements include:

• Construction - The University created its own sector leading sustainable  building specification, created outstanding BREEAM Outstanding buildings

• Waste Management - Tackled the whole of waste hierarchy with 70% recycling, onsite Rocket Composting, Furniture and Computer reuse and paper reduction

• Energy Management - Lowered Scope 1&2 carbon emissions by 20% through Combined Heat and Power (CHP), renewables and building management

• Travel - Reduction in single occupancy car commuting by 1/3 in both staff and students through offering a range of options around active travel, public transport, car sharing and virtual meeting technology

• Biodiversity - Increased number of habitats adding wild flower meadows, woodland, orchard, apiaries and permacultural allotments

• Curriculum - All courses have to have bespoke sustainability built into them and that is judged through the course review process

• Staff/Student Engagement - Student ambassador programme working on sustainability projects (e.g. green halls move out, switch off programmes, fair-trade fortnight), activities such as allotments, bird surveys, green campus trails, computer reuse.

The Future

The University is now entering the next phase of Ecoversity, having completed the more simple activities, and are pushing the boundaries in various new directions:

• Carbon Reduction - The Scope 1&2 carbon reduction target for 2020 has been stretched to an 80% cut of their 2005/6 emissions

• Energy Saving Behaviours – The University’s Behaviour Change programme utilising Edd:e metering, which saved up to 33% of energy in its pilot project, is to be rolled out to the whole institution and they are targeting 13-17% savings

• Business Travel - This area creates around 1,000 tonnes of C02 and costs millions annually is a major area of opportunity. The University is focussing work to limit the need to travel and implement their sustainable business travel framework

• Revolutionary Buildings - Their new student halls, The Green, has the highest BREEAM rating of any building in the UK. It aims to teach the students living there what it means to live sustainably. In additionto this the University’s next construction, the Sustainable Enterprise Centre, achieved the previous highest BREEAM score and is an active demonstrator for all the sustainable and innovative technologies used there.

The new ecoversity site is now up and running so why not take a look!

Main Contact Name: Ben Tongue, Environment Manager
Main Contact Email:
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