Today, Monday 21 November 2022, over 20 of London Higher’s member institutions have committed to building upon the sustainability work underway across London HE and to working collaboratively across the capital to reduce the environmental impact of HEIs, as well as proactively seek to address the challenges of the climate emergency.
The individual and cumulative environmental impacts that universities, large or small, generate are significant and need to be addressed urgently. External impacts are also increasing, meaning we need to adapt to increasingly challenging climates and resource availabilities which are creating growing business continuity risks.
As a community, London HEIs are home to over half a million staff and students. Students and staff rightfully expect HEIs and their leaders to take responsibility, and funders and student employers are increasingly seeking sustainability requirements.
The pledge has been developed as a response to these issues and asks institutions to commit to six points including: joining the London Higher Sustainability Network; providing data for a series of shared impact measurements; participating wherever possible in collaborative initiatives and activities through the network; committing to pan-London initiatives to tackle climate change through the GLA as anchor institutions within the capital, with wider local, national and international responsibilities.
Dr Sally Burtonshaw, Head of Policy at London Higher said:
“The London Higher sustainability pledge has been developed to drive collective change around climate action, whilst also acknowledging the diversity of our membership and ensuring all institutions can come together to create pan-London impacts. The pledge provides us with a clear foundation upon which London HEIs can build their commitment to sustainability work and support our London Higher members to embed sustainability across their day-to-day operations.”
Shirley Rodrigues, Deputy Mayor for Environment and Energy, London said:
“It’s exciting news that some of the capital’s biggest organisations have now pledged to work together to support London’s ambitious net zero targets. Now is the time to deliver on the estate decarbonisation efforts that will save on bills, decarbonise our capital and ensure a trained workforce in green construction.”
- The sustainability pledge can be read on our website.