What we have done
Keele was one of the first universities in the UK to have its Energy Management System (EnMS) certified to the prestigious quality standard ISO 50001. This assists in achieving continual improvement in the management of energy used across campus. The University's Energy Management system currently covers a combination of academic buildings, classrooms, lecture theatre, restaurant/cafe, teaching labs, kitchens and the estates activities for the academic buildings.
A key pillar of the EnMS is the University Energy Management Strategy. This document provides specific targets for energy efficiency and Low-Zero Carbon generation on campus and provides an action plan to achieve each. Agreed in 2017, the targets are to:
- Increase energy efficiency by 28% by 2022 against a 2015/16 baseline
- Increase energy generated from Low-Zero Carbon Sources to 25% of total campus energy use by 2022 against the 2015/16 baseline
The Strategy can be found here: Energy Management Strategy 2016-2022
Energy efficiency funding
Since 2010, The University has invested more than £3m in projects that have reduced both our energy consumption and carbon emissions. These projects include the installation of new efficient gas boilers, the development of a Combined Heat and Power energy centre, the replacement of inefficient lighting systems and improved insulation amongst others and are expected to deliver lifetime carbon savings of over 35,000 tonnes. We've been so successful that we were shortlisted for a Green Gown Award in the carbon reduction category in 2016.
We are consistently identifying and evaluating new projects and opportunities and have specific funding to allow us to implement those that meet specific payback criteria. Although we routinely identify new projects from building energy audits and maintenance programmes, we encourage both staff and students to assist us by providing suggestions for how we can improve the energy and water efficiency of your workspace or residence. We get some of our most effective projects this way so please feel free to fill in the KU Sustainability Ideas google form which you can find here.
Energy and water consumption performance
Please see the energy and water reports for the last academic year at the following links:
Low-zero carbon energy
Keele University is committed to reducing our impact from the energy consumption for our day to day business. For this reason we pay a premium for 100% of electricity through 'green' tariffs which is guaranteed to directly support renewable generators. In addition, we now produce more than 5% of our energy on site through low-zero carbon measures. These include more than 250kWp of solar photovoltaics, a biomass boiler and a Combined Heat and Power (CHP) engine. In addition, our Sustainability Hub has been testing a number of different types of decentralised energy production, including ground source heating, solar thermal and biomass.
More information on the Hub can be found here.
In 2019, the University received planning permission to build a renewable energy park consisting of 20,000 solar panels, two large wind turbines and a 1MW battery energy storage solution. Following completion in early 2021, the combined technologies will serve to produce more than half of the campus's annual electricity demand from clean renewables.