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Climate challenge


Climate change is one of the most serious threats facing the planet. Leicester College has declared a climate emergency and is committed to tackling this issue in whatever ways we can.

Purple logo for Race to ZeroWe have signed up to the Race to Zero for universities and colleges and have made a commitment to becoming a net-zero organisation by 2030. We are working to the Climate Commission and Nous Group Climate Action Roadmap for UK FE Colleges. This roadmap provides a framework based on good practice to help us reach net zero emissions, to embed sustainability into our future plans and to promote and encourage a commitment to work to combat climate change among our students, staff and stakeholders.

We publish regular statements and reports that relate to climate challenge, which you can read here. You can find out more about what we are doing to address the climate emergency in Leicester over the coming months by checking back to this site.

What have we already done

  • Electricity supplied to the College is green. It is provided by a supplier that guarantees zero emissions through the generation of electricity by renewal sources (hydro/wave, solar, and wind).
  • We have introduced a hybrid working policy that enables staff – where practical – to work on site and at home. This will realise a reduction in staff on site at any one time, leading to a decrease in energy consumption, as well as carbon reductions from travel to site.
  • Staff and students have access to free bike MOTs on all campuses, 3 times a year.
  • Staff are able to purchase bikes through a salary sacrifice scheme to help reduce car usage.
  • Free bike D locks are given to students to encourage cycling.
  • We use the Smartgo Green Travel discount hub for public transport. Staff use this hub to benefit from reduced bus fares from all the bus companies in Leicester and many staff use this portal.
  • Interest free loans are offered to staff to purchase bus and train season tickets.
  • A staff intercampus minibus was setup in 2012 with the help of a grant from Leicester City Council. Each year staff were making 12,500 – 13,000 trips saving about 1.2 tonne of CO2 emissions a year in a low emission vehicle. Due to the pandemic the service is not currently running however staff are encouraged to use Teams for meetings and travel between sites only when necessary.

In our on-site refectories we:

  • Sell Fairtrade teas, coffee, and chocolate
  • Recycle of used cooking oil, glass wear and clear plastic cutlery
  • Ensure that sandwiches bought in are packed in plastic free packaging
  • Have removed polystyrene from take away containers. Now only recyclable containers are used
  • Send food waste to an anaerobic digester plant – bio generator
  • Use local suppliers to reduce food miles – LIFE (local, independent, fair, ethical) with a 50-mile radius where possible
  • Buy in season food and vegetables, where possible
  • Use Red Tractor meat and MSC approved or sustainably sourced fish
  • Wherever possible, remove food items that contain palm oil or use products that contain sustainable palm oil.
  • Offer ‘use your own cup’ incentives.

Sustainability Ambassadors

Our Sustainability Initiatives:

At Leicester College, sustainability isn’t just a buzzword – it’s one of our core values. We are committed to creating a sustainable future for our planet, and this commitment is reflected in every aspect of college life. Through innovative initiatives and dedicated efforts, we are proud to be leading the way towards a greener, more environmentally conscious tomorrow.

From reducing carbon emissions to promoting eco-friendly practices, Leicester College has implemented a wide range of sustainability initiatives that align with our values.

Sustainability Ambassadors:

At Leicester College, we believe in empowering our students and staff to become sustainability ambassadors. Sustainability is not just a concept we teach – it’s a value we live by. Through our sustainability ambassador program, both curriculum and students are actively involved in promoting sustainable practices within the college and beyond. These ambassadors play a crucial role in raising awareness, driving positive change, and inspiring others to embrace sustainability.

Curriculum Integration:

Sustainability is ingrained in our curriculum because we believe it’s essential for students to understand and apply sustainable principles in their lives and careers. From environmental science to business management, our curriculum integrates sustainability across various disciplines. By incorporating sustainability into education, we are preparing our students to become future leaders who prioritise environmental stewardship and social responsibility.

Join Us in Our Sustainability Journey:

Whether you’re a student, staff member, or community member, we invite you to join us in our sustainability journey. Together, we can make a difference and create a brighter, more sustainable future for all. Get involved, be inspired, and let’s work towards a greener, cleaner, and more sustainable world.

At Leicester College, sustainability isn’t just a goal – it’s one of our core values. Join us in making a positive impact today and for generations to come.

Objectives for 2023/24

  • Continue progress with the AoC sustainability roadmap.
  • Ensure Aeronautical Development completed to BREEAM Very Good Standards.
  • Work with Aquafund UK to reduce water consumption.
  • Drive through CO2 emission reductions through careful management of the Building Management Systems across College.
  • Explore PPA agreement involving the installation of PV Cells on roofs of Freehold buildings.
  • Commission an external audit of ESG.
  • Explore SALIX grant funding opportunities.
  • Produce an annual streamlined carbon usage report and ensure visibility.
  • Obtain annual Display Energy Certificates (DECs) for buildings and act on any findings.
  • Reduce waste tonnage produced by the College and increase the amount diverted from landfill.
  • Work with local partners on delivering the Net Zero agenda. Lead Sub-Group on Sustainable Food Procurement.
  • Continue to increase the amount of meat free alternatives in College.
  • Help to embed Sustainable Development Goals within curriculum delivery.
  • Complete out of hours energy audits.
  • Develop staff training in Sustainability.