THE University of Winchester’s efforts to create a green campus has turned gold.

Winchester has been ranked as a gold tier university in the Uswitch Green Universities 2023 Report.

To achieve gold, the university scored positively in six out of seven criteria which featured in a Freedom of Information request from the Uswitch researchers.

Highlights of Winchester’s green credentials include renewable energy installations on site, including solar panels, air source heat pumps, 18 electric vehicles and hedgehog-friendly gold status.

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Hampshire Chronicle: Green space around the University of WinchesterGreen space around the University of Winchester (Image: University of Winchester)The university is also on a renewable energy tariff for its electricity, offers sustainability workshops to students and staff, and has not sent any waste to landfill since 2013.

The University of Winchester has used 100 per cent zero-carbon electricity since 2008. It has solar panels on nine of its buildings which generate approximately four per cent of the University’s total electricity consumption. 

The University’s long-term aim is to move away from gas entirely and since 2020/21 it has cut its use of the fossil fuel by 20 per cent.

A grant of £3.12m from the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme in 2020/21 has seen the replacement of 35 gas boilers with low-energy air source heat pumps.

Mat Jane, head of environment and building services at the university, said: “This gold ranking highlights our ongoing commitment to reducing the impact our campus has on the environment.

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“We have cut our scope 1 and 2 energy emissions by 67 per cent relative to the size of the estate and achieved a 42 per cent reduction in absolute terms.”

Gavin Hunter, Chief Operating Officer, said: “Mat and his team are to be congratulated on their hard work and the effective way that they have implemented a number of sustainability initiatives which, along with great engagement by students and colleagues, have helped Winchester achieve gold status in this survey.

“It’s now more important than ever that institutions such as the University of Winchester continue to demonstrate that it is possible to reduce their carbon footprints by significant amounts.”