We are committed to a fairer, better and more sustainable world for all
We are committed to reducing the environmental impact of the department
We are a member of Green Impact Universities and Colleges, an accreditation and award scheme run by the NUS.
Established in 2019—the Climate Change Group—looks at research, travel and infrastructure with the aim of minimising the carbon footprint of the Department of Psychiatry.
Membership is open to all volunteers from a wide range of departmental members and meets approximately every two weeks.
Core members include the Head of Department and the Business and Operations Manager. The current chair is Sue Gathercole.
The departmental Climate Change goals are to track and reduce energy consumption increase recycling and reduce waste monitor travel emissions and encourage low emission travel.
- understand and quantify the major sources of departmental carbon consumption
- help identify, implement and evaluate targeted actions to reduce emissions
- embed environmental protection and sustainability in departmental planning and decision-making
- support staff awareness of University and departmental environmental policies
- work in partnership with local environmental groups
Our highly successful energy-saving project is led by departmental member Rob Clarke, administrator at the Hershel Smith Building for Brain and Mind Sciences and building lead for the University’s ‘Green Impact’.
Actions we are taking
Track and reduce energy consumption
The department is situated at four shared sites – the Clifford Allbutt and Herchel Smith Buildings at the Biomedical Campus, Level E4 an embedded site within the main Addenbrooke’s building and Douglas House. Energy use is monitored for the Herchel Smith and Clifford Allbutt buildings as a whole. The Herchel Smith Building energy use is regularly checked using the ‘Systems Link’ online platform and yearly comparisons are displayed in the HSB Seminar Room. These findings are regularly checked to ensure our energy consumption matches the operating hours of the building. We are also exploring new ways to reduce energy use throughout the building.
Increase recycling and reduce waste
The University’s Waste & Recycling Strategy sets out three guiding principles that staff should take when managing the University’s resources and the practices and policies that could be adopted by University departments. We will review existing procedures to support these principles, as well as adapting and implementing new mechanisms to support the strategy. Eliminate and reduce waste at the source.
Monitor travel emissions and encourage low emission travel
Two steps have been taken to understand the carbon consumption associated with departmental travel and to reduce unnecessary high carbon travel.
Monitor departmental travel:
The Climate Change Group carried out a travel survey of all staff and student from August 2018 to July 2019. A key outcome was the estimate of carbon consumed for business travel during this period. Follow the links for the survey findings and Travel Case Study.
The survey annually from the commencement of the post-pandemic period in order to track progress towards the goal of minimising the carbon footprint of research-related travel while maintaining support for high priority travel.
Staff travel policy:
The department has adopted the Tyndall Travel framework to guide individual decisions about travel for the purposes of research and associated activities. The framework provides a set of guiding principles for departmental members in making their decisions about travel for the purposes of research and career development. It provides a means of balancing the environmental costs of international travel with its benefits, particularly for early career researchers.
This travel policy will commence a one-year trial period from April 2021. From this point, departmental members will be asked to identify the emissions justification category from 1 to 4 (well- to poorly-justified emissions) for any business trip as part of the Risk Assessment process. The categorisation depends on the career stage of the traveller and is described in the Psychiatry Travel Policy.
Professor Ed Bullmore
Dr Elizabeth McKiernan
Dr Lisa Ronan
Dr Varun Warrior