Bournemouth University expands behaviour change initiative following cuts to energy consumption

Bournemouth University is rolling out a sustainability and wellbeing employee engagement initiative to all of its 2,000 employees, after a six-month pilot of the programme helped to reduce energy consumption in select departments by 14.6%.

The University originally enrolled four departments in the JUMP employee engagement programme, led by Green Rewards, which rewards individual and team prizes for implementing positive sustainable business changes.

The six-month pilot saw energy consumption fall by 14.6% across the four departments, and the University is now expanding the JUMP programme across all of its staff members.

Green Rewards’ managing director Graham Simmonds said: “We’re delighted with how well the JUMP pilot has gone. We’re really looking forward to the university-wide roll out and helping the university work towards achieving its environmental and wellbeing targets.” 

JUMP works by engaging employees on a range of themes through an online platform and app. Employees are rewarded with points for reducing their environmental footprint and improving their wellbeing through measures such as cycling, car-sharing, or using re-usable cups and bottles. In the first six months of the programme, 26,000 sustainable miles were travelled to and from campus and 11 tonnes of carbon emissions were avoided. 

Bournemouth University and Green Rewards held a joint awards ceremony to crown the winner of the pilot programme, with the University’s finance team awarded top prize and choosing to donate prize money to the Bournemouth Food Bank.

The University joined the JUMP initiative in January, becoming the fourth university to join the programme alongside Swansea University, the University of Chichester and Brunel University. The initiative has since been adopted by the University of Winchester.

Bournemouth identity

The local council praised Bournemouth University for its role in the town’s low-carbon transition. The council has directly benefitted from the University, which is increasingly gearing its teaching towards sustainability. As well as offering a Green Economy Masters Course, the University has also provided research and resources to the Dorset Local Natural Partnership.

The University also installed a 95KWp solar system on a £22m “fusion building”, which opened in June 2016. The array will provide the University with more than 100,000kWh of electricity annually.

In related news, the University of Northampton officially opened its £6.5m Biomass Energy Centre on Wednesday (2 August). Delivered by energy firm Vital Energi and construction consultants Mace, the 1MW biomass facility will link up with a 1.6km district heating network to provide for 16 buildings on the campus.

The biomass plant is expected to reduce the University’s carbon emissions by more than 1,000 tonnes annually. Once combined with the Combined Heat and Power (CHP) boiler, the system will reduce emissions by 2,200 tonnes.

Matt Mace

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