Hartpury is proud to have joined the newly-created Climate Commission for UK Higher and Further Education Leaders aimed at tackling the climate crisis.
The Commission, which was officially launched today, aims to create a clear, cohesive and consistent response to the UK Government’s declared Climate and Environment Emergency.
As a member of the Commission’s Council, Hartpury will help to develop a strategic framework, set ambitious targets, commit to action and drive change, over the next 12 months.
Working with Government, students, regulatory bodies and sector agencies, the Commission’s Council will collaborate with institutions to ensure they reach the UK Government’s target of reducing all greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050.
It will also seek expert evidence from academics and researchers to consider how to use existing good practice and encourage greater collaboration.
Russell Marchant, Vice-Chancellor of Hartpury University and Principal of Hartpury College, said: “We’re delighted to have joined the Climate Commission for UK Higher and Further Education Leaders and look forward to developing a sector-led action plan to limit climate damage and empower the next generation.
“We’re pleased that students and young people – often at the forefront of environmental issues – will have a voice and contribute to the Commission’s response to how we tackle the climate emergency.
“Colleges and universities have a crucial part to play in raising the issues surrounding climate change, as educators, employers and large businesses.
“As a land-based institution, we’re fully committed to doing everything we can to help protect the natural world around us and we’re continually reviewing our sustainability and environmental strategy.”
Developed as a partnership initiated by the Alliance for Sustainability Leadership in Education and joined by the Association of Colleges, GuildHE and Universities UK, the Commission will enable universities and colleges to work together in an unprecedented way to tackle the climate crisis.
Leaders and sustainability experts will bring their skills and experience together throughout the Commission and a final report will be presented at COP26 – a major United Nations climate change summit – in Glasgow in 2020.
Lord Deben, Chair of the Committee on Climate Change, added: “Universities and colleges have a centrally important role to play in tackling climate change.
“Reaching net zero emissions is essential, it is feasible, and as a sector dedicated to knowledge and thought leadership it is rightfully expected.
“The Commission has the ability to bring the full force of the UK’s expansive and powerful tertiary education sector to bear on climate change, with students and staff working together to lead the charge.”
Picture: Russell Marchant, Vice-Chancellor of Hartpury University and Principal of Hartpury College