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Signposting to the University's sustainability rankings information

We recognise the climate emergency and in response embed sustainable practices throughout our policies, education for sustainable development and operations.


Policy and strategy

In 2020 the University of Bath declared a climate emergency and developed 11 Climate Action Framework (CAF) principles, setting out our commitment to responding to climate change. We report on our progress through our Climate Action Blog and annual Climate Action Report.

In 2023, the University recruited a Director of Sustainability with the aim of broadening our work beyond the CAF principles, to a wider sustainability agenda, which will include an update to our Environmental Policy.

Staff & HR

Our new Director of Sustainability, Richard Jackson, leads the Climate Action Team, along with other colleagues who have direct responsibility for sustainability at Bath University.

Staff across the University are part of a community of change makers with many ways to get actively involved in taking climate action.

Environmental auditing & management systems

The University of Bath’s Internal Audit Department undertakes an annual independent assessment of the carbon data presented within the Climate Action Annual Report.

The University does not currently use an Environmental Management System but is in the process of implementing EcoCampus.

Ethical investment and banking

Read the University’s Investment Policy. The Investment Sub-Committee provide assurance to Finance Committee on the management of the University’s investments, including ethical decision-making and ensuring funds are managed sustainably, and with integrity, in regard to environmental impact, social impact and governance.

Ethical careers and recruitment

Information about Careers at University of Bath can be found on our website including a Careers employer guide to posting opportunities.

Sustainable food

The University’s Sustainable Food Commitment (SFC) recognises the social and environmental impact of food and commits to supporting our community to make low carbons choices on campus, in line with our CAF Principles.

The SFC applies to the University’s hospitality, retail and SU outlets on campus. It is included in the University’s Procurement Policy and so is embedded in tenders and external contracts, for example, graduation ceremonies.

The SFC was approved by the University Executive Board and an annual review was published following a successful first year since launch, including the launch of our first vegan outlet; Parade!

The University provides space and support for student and staff led sustainable food projects such as the vertically integrated project ‘Students for Sustainable Food’, our new community larder, our Gardening Club and cooking classes.

Staff and student engagement

Staff and student engagement actions

In September 2021, Bath became the first University to include Carbon Literacy in induction for all new students. The Climate Literacy Programme is open to all staff and students at the University and is promoted during both staff and student induction. All new members of staff are sent a welcome pack which includes information about our Climate Action Framework and how to get involved, in addition to being invited to a welcome event where the Climate Action team present University strategies, policies and engagement opportunities regarding sustainability.

The University regularly promotes events and activities to encourage engagement. So far, this academic year we have encouraged staff and students to take part in:

The University of Bath recognizes that solutions to our carbon reduction challenges will come from many different areas of the University, which is why we have a Net Zero Carbon Campus Fund to provide small grants which support students and/or staff to take action and reduce carbon emissions in their own department.

It is also ensured that there is student and trade union representation on committees that over see work towards our CAF principles. The Climate Action Steering Group is responsible for governing the University's climate action agenda and tracking progress towards our net zero targets. The following lists the Steering Group, its sub-groups, and other relevant Groups, and the student and trade union representation within each.

Climate Action Steering Group: Students Union Activities Coordinator, Deputy Chief Executive SU.

  • climate action advisory group: UNISON representative, Unite representative, UCU rep, People and Planet Bath Chair
  • climate action education advisory group: Unite and UCU representative, Students Union Education Officer

Transport Working Group: Deputy Chief Executive SU, UNISON, Unite, and UCU rep.

Sustainable Food Commitment Steering Group: Students Union Activities Coordinator, Student representation from Sustainable Food VIP, People and Planet Bath Chair.

Sustainability Communications Working Group: Students Union Activities Coordinator.

Student representation

Within the wider University there is also student representation at the Advancement Advisory Board, the Education Advisory Board, the Estates Strategy and Buildings Advisory Board, and the Student Experience Advisory Board, which all report into the University Executive Board.

Staff or student led evaluation

Bath University offers the Laboratory Efficiency Assessment Framework (LEAF), a standard for auditing sustainable laboratory operations. Currently there are 114 laboratories, across 10 departments signed up to LEAF, of which 38 were awarded Bronze Accreditation and 1 achieved both Silver and Gold in February 2024!

Additionally, Bath University is in the process of signing up to Green Impact with the particular aim of enabling staff based in offices to track, audit and take action to reduce their environmental impact, as is already available to laboratory staff via LEAF.

Education for sustainable development

Commitment and Governance for Education for Sustainable Development

The University of Bath Strategy 2021-2026 places its 5 values at the heart of the Strategy, one of which stating ‘Supporting a sustainable community and adopting best environmental practice’ demonstrates our commitment to education for sustainable development. This is strengthened by the CAF principle to ‘Develop educational initiatives to build a world class reputation for high-quality education on climate-related issues with global reach and scale.

Implementing and tracking progress in education for sustainable development

The Climate Action Education Advisory Group regularly report progress on the CAF Education Strategy to the Climate Action Steering Group in addition to the annual Climate Action Report. Find out more about the University’s strategy for implementing and tracking progress in Education for Sustainable Development.

Supporting academic staff

Training and support is provided for academic staff to embed education for sustainable development into the curriculum, such as:

Education for sustainable development actions

The University of Bath promotes real-world learning of skills for education for sustainable development, as a core component of the CAF principle to develop high-quality educational initiatives. Our Vertically Integrated Projects (VIPs) are innovative research-based projects that enable students and staff to collaborate on long-term real-world issues.

Another of our CAF principles is to support world-class research activities to deliver impactful research and innovation supporting the transition to the net zero carbon economy. You can read about some of our sustainable research projects, listen to our podcast ‘How can we get to Net Zero’ and find out about our Research Centres and Institutions tackling challenges related to the climate emergency.

Access to higher education

University of Bath offers multiple scholarships for the full duration and cost of the degree programme, or a full fee waiver, for people in the process of seeking asylum, people with refugee status or humanitarian protection and people with other limited forms of leave to remain in the UK.. Further information can be found in our Access and Participation Plan 2020-2024.

Energy sources, waste and recycling, carbon reduction, water reduction

The latest available data submitted to the Estates Management Record (EMR), is made publicly available by the Higher Education Statistics Agency, HESA.

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