As this week is Big Energy Saving Week, we are looking at the various ways to save energy on campus as well as the successful projects we already have underway. This year we were awarded THE Awards' Outstanding Estates Strategy for our work within energy saving and sustainability as a university invested in clean and viable energy sources.
The Estates team worked to pioneer the use of food-based anaerobic digestion systems to supply most of its on-campus electricity, but unfortunately these systems ceased operations in 2014. However, we continued to seek ways of curbing our energy uses.
Our new renewable energy strategy includes a substantial photovoltaic array across several of our larger farm buildings linked to a gas-powered combined heat and power (CHP) system and a woodchip biofuel heating system to supplement the CHP engine. By using renewable sources of energy, Harper Adams is now very much back on track to reduce its energy costs and meet its carbon emissions targets through a network designed to generate 75 per cent of its electricity and 80 per cent of its heat.
At the Awards, the judges congratulated our “significant leadership in sustainable development” through an approach that “demonstrated both vision and resilience. Vision in that they had invested significantly in sustainable development as a clear step change for the university, and resilience in that when disaster struck, they took the opportunity to deliver a much-improved and expanded version of their previous scheme”.
Arthur Broadhurst, University Engineer, who accepted the award from event host Julian Clary, said: “It is a great honour to have so many people’s hard work on the STEP project recognised with this award. We look forward to showcasing our green estate to colleagues from across the university estates sector when we host our STEP Campus Engineering Infrastructure Open Day on January 23.”
While this is a great success for the university, we continue to work towards more sustainable energy sources and products. To read more about Sustainable Harper, click here. To register for the STEP Campus Engineering Infrastructure Open Day, please see below.