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University's Sustainability Initiatives Win Two International Awards

Efforts to promote sustainable living in Worcester, led by the University of Worcester, have been recognised with two international awards.

The University joined forces with Worcester City Council and local businesses and organisations, including Worcester Bosch, on sustainability projects, which have now won two silver Green Apple Awards.

The first project was Go Green Week, which featured a week of activities in the City centre designed to get people thinking about what they could do to lead more sustainable lives. The second was Energize Worcester, which works with students and landlords to look at boiler controls in shared student housing.

The Green Apple Environmental Awards annually recognise, reward and promote sustainability best practice around the world and were awarded at a ceremony in the Houses of Parliament.

The University’s Director of Sustainability, Katy Boom, said: “As a University we are committed to making a difference not only to our students, by equipping them with skills and knowledge to tackle the global sustainability issues we face, but also in raising awareness among the public and showing them how small actions they take can make an impact. Through our effective work with partners within the City and beyond on these two key projects we have been able to help people live more sustainably and pave the way for future change, and we will continue to strive for even greater success. We are honoured and proud that our achievements have been recognised at one of the most prestigious awards in this field.”

In its second year, Go Green Week, held in April, featured a Feed the 1,000 event, highlighting the scale of food waste in the UK, with help from Heart of Worcestershire College catering students and students visiting from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Massachusetts.

Energize Worcester initially looked at students’ attitudes towards energy management, working with the City Council and landlords, and now, through collaboration with Worcester Bosch, the project is concentrating on boiler controls and decision making of landlords and students in shared houses.

Councillor Alan Feeney, Vice Chair of Worcester City Council’s Environment Committee, said: “These two schemes were great partnerships between University of Worcester students, local businesses and the City Council to promote sustainable living in our city, and it’s fantastic to see them recognised with Green Apple Awards.”

Martyn Bridges, Director of Technical Communications and Product Management at Worcester Bosch, said: “We were delighted to be part of this initiative. We have a great deal of knowledge of how families interact with their heating controls but we wanted to get a greater insight into multi-occupancy properties such as those the students were living in. This has enabled us to understand the energy saving abilities of our controls in this kind of environment.”

Earlier this year, the University of Worcester was ranked the fourth most sustainable university in the country in People and Planet’s University League, which measures sustainability performance at higher education institutions. It has been ranked in the top five for the last four years.