News – Nottingham’s universities lead climate action discussion as part of Sustainability Action Week

Friday, 26 February 2021

Nottingham’s two universities are bringing together sustainability expertise from across Nottingham to run a week of events to raise awareness about environmental and social issues.

Sustainability Action Week is a Universities for Nottingham initiative, and in partnership with NTSU, UoNSU and Nottingham City Council, experts from both universities will share thoughts for more sustainable ways of living and working in the City and how to make positive changes.

The flagship event of the week is the Nottingham Sustainability Action Panel Discussion and Workshop – a collaborative discussion between Nottingham City Council, Nottingham Trent University, University of Nottingham and representatives from both students’ unions addressing the global challenge presented by climate change and what we, as civic institutions, plan to do reduce carbon emissions.

Individual and collective action

The discussion will look at actions already taken by all institutions as well as plans to further reduce carbon emissions, in support of Nottingham’s Carbon Neutral 2028 target. The panel will also explore steps we can also take as individuals and how this supports wider efforts.

The virtual, live, interactive session is open for all to attend, and participants will be able to submit questions for the panel. Following the panel discussion, workshops will take place where participants can share their ideas and explore pathways to net zero carbon through individual and collective action.

Nottingham is leading the way in terms of sustainability; our two universities are ranked among the most sustainable in the world, and our City Council leads the UK through a commitment to being carbon-neutral by 2028.

Charmaine Morrell, Head of Sustainability at Nottingham Trent University

She added: “But this is not the time to rest on our laurels, there is so much still to do, we are in the midst of a climate emergency and ecological crisis, and we all need to take responsibility and action to reduce negative impacts on the environment and deliver on net zero carbon. Collaboration is key, and it is hoped that we can all learn something through this event, as individuals, institutions and city wide – to make Nottingham the truly sustainable, low carbon city it has the ambition to become.”

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Rewarding sustainability

The University of Nottingham is launching a new sustainability app, Green Rewards, on Tuesday 2 March for staff and students to earn rewards for their sustainable habits. Users can earn points by logging their actions, such as walking or cycling instead of driving, taking part in quizzes on clean air or energy, and even spending time outside on their lunch break or growing their own vegetables. Each month top performing staff and students will win a £20 voucher and every term, users can vote for a charity to receive a £200 donation. Since Nottingham Trent University launched their version of the Green Rewards app in 2019, more than 136,000 sustainability actions have been completed, resulting in more than 150,000 kg of avoided carbon emissions.

We are really excited to be launching Green Rewards during Sustainability Week. Our staff and students have told us they want to reduce their environmental footprint and the app will empower us all to make the small changes that are necessary in working towards Nottingham’s carbon target.

Andy Nolan, Director of Sustainability at the University of Nottingham

He added: “We’ll also be launching a new University campaign during the week which will bring together all our sustainability work and encourage and support staff and students alike to be more sustainable. Even the smallest actions add up to big impacts. Every sustainable change we make takes us closer to our goal, and change is possible when we all work together.”

Ambitious plans

Wayne Bexton, Head of Energy and Sustainability at Nottingham City Council said: “We’re extremely proud to be the leading core city in the UK in relation to our carbon reduction, energy and sustainability agenda, with an ambitious plan to build on our work in recent years by achieving carbon neutrality by 2028. Our ambition is Citywide and we therefore need everyone to play their part in helping us achieve this goal. We are extremely fortunate to have two fantastic Universities, with sustainability embedded at the centre of their operations, and I’m delighted they have both joined in our commitment to be carbon neutral. This collaboration will undoubtedly be a cornerstone in enabling us to achieve this ambition for Nottingham.”

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For more information on the event and to register to attend, visit https://www.ntu.ac.uk/about-us/events/events/2021/03/nottingham-sustainability-action-panel-discussion-and-workshop

Our academics can now be interviewed for broadcast via our Media Hub, which offers a Globelynx fixed camera and ISDN line facilities at University Park campus. For further information please contact a member of the Communications team on +44 (0)115 951 5798, email  pressoffice@nottingham.ac.uk or see the Globelynx website for how to register for this service.

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Notes to editors:

The University of Nottingham is a research-intensive university with a proud heritage, consistently ranked among the world’s top 100. Studying at the University of Nottingham is a life-changing experience and we pride ourselves on unlocking the potential of our students. We have a pioneering spirit, expressed in the vision of our founder Sir Jesse Boot, which has seen us lead the way in establishing campuses in China and Malaysia – part of a globally connected network of education, research and industrial engagement. The University’s state-of-the-art facilities and inclusive and disability sport provision is reflected in its status as The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021 Sports University of the Year. We are ranked eighth for research power in the UK according to REF 2014. We have six beacons of research excellence helping to transform lives and change the world; we are also a major employer and industry partner – locally and globally. Alongside Nottingham Trent University, we lead the Universities for Nottingham initiative, a pioneering collaboration which brings together the combined strength and civic missions of Nottingham’s two world-class universities and is working with local communities and partners to aid recovery and renewal following the COVID-19 pandemic.

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