Sustainability database


Dr Emma Gardner

Head of Environmental Sustainability

I'm head of environmental sustainability, and my role is to lead on the development and implementation of the university’s environmental sustainability plan.

The university has four faculties, 20 academic schools, several major research institutes, professional support services and cultural assets. There are over 10,000 members of staff and we have one of the largest student communities in the UK - there are over 39,000 registered at the university, according to 2012 figures. So reducing the impact of the university is no mean feat!

The university is aiming to “embed environmental sustainability as a key priority across the full range of activities”, and has a strategy and plan to support this.

As well as implementing this plan, I'm responsible for developing and implementing an enabling framework for the delivery of the university’s carbon reduction targets as set out in the carbon management plan. And I support the team’s delivery of the sustainable travel plan, sustainable waste plan and other areas including biodiversity and sustainable design and construction of new builds and major refurbishments.

(For full interview with Emma go to: 2 degreesnetwork:

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Engagement with Students' Union

Regular dialogue with Students' Union on sustainability issues. 30 students trained at environmental auditors. Student reps on all environmental sustainability committees.


Dedicated sustainability section in department strategy

Low carbon transition strongly emphasised. 5 members on the Environmental Sustainability team. Two Green Impact teams. Plan for directorate-wide Environment Group which will sustantially increase the number of enthusiasts and teams.


Auditing business travel to reduce carbon footprint

Calculating fleet carbon emissions at present. Electric vehicle purchased. Egencia travel booking system is use.


Energy: Thermal efficiency improvements

Over half a million invested in Revolving Green Fund projects, saving 800t co2 per year. New jobs for Carbon Reduction Technicians. CHP project being developed. Building surveys. Eco-friendly food storage trial.



Engagement with wider community. Collaboration with a local organisation to promote the re-use of items for educational projects. Focus on bringing the university and the community together on environmental issues. Collaboration with Manchester Museum.