Despite the unexpected challenges we’ve faced this past year, another successful round of Green Impact submissions has now come to a close.

The usual toolkit actions and project guidelines which make up the University’s sustainability programme have altered in light of changing working conditions, making it possible for our enrolled staff and students to make a positive impact wherever they are based, whether on campus or at home.

We’re thrilled with the achievements of this year’s 22 teams, some experienced and some new this academic year, who have engaged with the programme’s sustainability actions, and have delivered a total of 41 projects between them. These activities help to ingrain a sustainability agenda within departments across our University, reaching more people with sustainability messages and resulting in a shift in behaviours and attitudes which contribute to meeting our shared sustainability goals. This year especially, taking part in the programme has been an opportunity for increased workplace engagement, which has been positive for those involved.

Elizabeth Hancox from the newly formed Research Services / Partnerships and Regional Engagement Green Impact team shares insight into her experience with the programme this year :

“As a new member of staff I have really enjoyed being a member of the RS / PRE Green Impact team. It has been a great way to get to know people from different areas and departments who I otherwise would not have spoken with as often (or at all) especially while working from home. The projects and essential actions have made me realise that small individual actions all add up and can have a big impact. I have enjoyed learning new skills, meeting new people and learning more about environmental issues”.

Last week we were able to share with our Green Impact teams their final achievements this year, awarding 8 Bronze, 8 Silver, 4 Gold and 2 Platinum awards. Below are a few examples of the work from this year’s teams:

– A range of charity initiatives including the Hicks team who raised over £600 in donations for 3 different food-based charities, as well as donating foodstuffs amounting to a value of £126. The Accommodation and Commercial Services (ACS) team organised S6 foodbank collections across campus which came to 1.2 tonnes of food (approximately 350 family meals!) collected in total, whilst also raising an impressive £570 for the charity.

– Our labs teams produced a range of educational resources to inform lab users about improved sustainability practices, and organised activities to help reduce, reuse and recycle of lab plastics.

– A range of wellbeing activities helping department members to stay connected whilst working remotely, such as coffee roulette, virtual bake alongs, lunchtime walks and pre-meeting exercises!

– A garden balcony created at the Florey building, which is now home to a range of flowers, herbs and vegetables which are growing there, as well as providing a new green space for the Biomedical Sciences department

– A sustainable food webinar series, SHEFF-Yield, which encourages people to give growing their own food a go!

– A range of challenges and activities focussing on improved sustainability behaviours whilst working remotely, including a carbon footprint competition via Giki Zero.

– A ‘Sustainable Eating’ cookbook produced by the Management School.

– Department flight audits and resources relating to sustainable and inclusive conferences.

– Significant reductions in waste and investigations into sustainable suppliers from Print and Design Solutions.

– Wellbeing walks resources from ScHARR and Corporate Communications.

– Greener Inhaler prescribing from University Health Services.

A huge thank you to all our active Green Impact teams, for continuing to deliver fantastic sustainability activities despite the challenges we’ve faced this year.

If you’d like to find out more about Green Impact and how your department could get involved in sustainability actions, please get in touch at