Carbon and Water Management

Since our 2005/06 baseline year, the University has reduced carbon dioxide emissions by 30% and has ranked highly against other Russell Group institutions for carbon emissions reductions, as illustrated in the recent Brite Green report. The University of Exeter had the best performance for carbon emissions per FTE student, was third for overall carbon reduction against 2005/06 baseline, fourth  for carbon emissions per square metre and fourth for carbon emissions per £income.  These reductions have been made alongside significant growth in our estate, more staff and student, increases in the energy intensity of our research and extended operating hours of our buildings. Despite these significant savings, it is likely that the University will fall short of its current target of 43% by 2020.

Estates Services have continued to deliver the Energy Saving Programme as part of the Salix Revolving Fund.   In 2016/17, the programme focussed on lighting upgrades (conversion to LED), heating upgrades (controls and plant) and loft insulation.  The total investment over the year was £296,000 with anticipated annual energy and costs savings of 620,000 kWh and £76,850 respectively.  Since the introduction of the Salix energy saving programme in 2009, £1,845,000 has been invested with annual savings of £450,000 having been realised.

In 2016/17, the electricity contract for the University was reviewed and a decision was made to buy into a Green Energy contract.  Our electricity supplier (EDF) can now certify that the University of Exeter has 100% of its electricity supply from EDF backed by Clean Technology Renewable Energy.  The benefits of this are the University has a certified supply from either wind, solar or hydro.  

Water consumption has increased by 5.5%.  There is a commitment in the 2017/18 Sustainability Action Plan to conduct baseline reviews of large buildings.

Targets and delivery plans

Theme Target Delivery plan / strategy
Carbon dioxide

43% by 2020

Low Carbon Commitment Strategy
Electricity 3% per annum by kWh/m2 Estates Strategy
Water 3% per annum by m3/m2 Estates Strategy