University launches Carbon Awareness road show

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A series of Carbon Awareness Road Shows have been organised by the University to highlight the launch of its Carbon Management Plan (CMP).

The official launch of the CMP was a Carbon Awareness Day held on Tuesday Week One. A lecture for staff and students discussing the CMP was given in the Conference Centre by the University’s Head of Infrastructure Mike Sheppard, Environment and Sustainability Manager Jonathan Mills and Professor Roger Kemp from the Department of Engineering.

The event was described afterwards by Mills as a success, saying that it “went very well”. He was happy with the attendance to the day; “obviously being in Edward Roberts Court [where an information point was set up] you’re only going to catch a proportion of the people who pass through”.

The launch involved the publication of the CMP Executive Strategy document which describes the plan’s purpose as “being to provide a strategic route map, detailing how the university proposes to reduce its carbon emissions through the implementation of a range of policies and projects.”

Mills described the CPM as the overall strategy the University has set out to try to decrease its impact on the environment through carbon emissions. It includes proposals to introduce campus-wide energy efficiency measures, including new gas thermal boilers, a CHP boiler and a biomass boiler which will be fitted in the summer. These are projects being developed alongside the wind turbine project.

As part of the CMP a series the Carbon Awareness Road Shows are being run in different locations across campus to bring the proposals to anyone who is interested. Mills said that they “had all the materials produced so it’s a really good opportunity to use them again”, with posters and awareness signs being used as part of the plan.

Speaking after the Carbon Awareness Road Show held on Thursday week Two, Mills said that he “feel[s] as though I’ve been talking to people all day.” The use of different locations has already proven fruitful, Mills said, with “plenty of people who are very interested” in both the Management School and Lancaster Environment Centre.

The Carbon Awareness Day also ran a competition to find the best new carbon awareness idea, with the chance to win a new bike or an iPod touch. “Some were more novel than others” Mills diplomatically said of the 40-50 entries afterwards.

The 2008/ 09 Higher Education Carbon Management Programme, which Lancaster University’s CMP is a participation of, aims to decrease carbon emissions from the higher education sector by 43% by 2020. The University has optimistically dedicated itself “to try to ensure that we at least meet the target”, according to Mills.

At the time of this issue’s release, the upcoming Carbon Awareness Road Shows are Thursday Week Three in the Infolab21 reception, Monday and Thursday Week Four in the University House foyer and outside Green Lancaster respectively, and Monday week 5 in the Faraday Lecture Theatre foyer. All road shows are running between 11am and 2pm. Mills mentioned that a further awareness day may be run after those already planned, though it is to be confirmed.

The Executive Summary concludes with a promise; “The University is committed to meeting the targets that have been set within this Carbon Management Plan.”

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