Cranfield runs regular events and activities throughout the year with the aim of raising awareness of green issues and helping to maintain a sustainable environment in and around the University's campuses.
Details about some of our recent activities can be found below.
Biodiversity walks and Springwatch
As Cranfield is a hotspot for a variety of plant, animal, and fungi species, we run a series of lunchtime walks around the campus to help staff and students spot wildlife, and we also host Springwatch events.
The Woodland Trail opened on our Cranfield campus in September 2019, thanks to funding from Central Bedfordshire Council, and features a 20-minute walk along a woodchipped path with bug houses and information about some of the local wildlife.
We encourage staff and students to submit photos to us and report wildlife on campus via our social media pages, or by contacting email@example.com.
Energy costs are increasing and so are concerns about the climate. Cranfield University is addressing this through its academic work but also in the management of its estate.
By the end of the academic year 2020-21, we are expected to reach our target of a 50% reduction from a 2005 baseline.
A lot has been done already but, after staff costs, energy is still one of our larger operational costs. Fortunately, reducing energy costs is relatively straightforward: we just have to identify where it is being wasted and then take action to stop this. We are working across campus on a building-by-building basis to help address issues with high energy consumptions.
We have also enabled 'Energy Champions' amongst our staff to help to identify energy saving opportunities on campus and encourage behaviour change.
For more information, please visit our Carbon and Energy Management web page.
Every year, we celebrate Fairtrade Fortnight with a series of events, campaigns and promotions on campus. We are committed to following the Fairtrade principles of better prices, decent working conditions, local sustainability, and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers in the developing world. Events organised have ranged from film screenings and Fairtrade wine tasting, to talks and presentations given by Fairtrade farmers and producers.
Fairtrade Fortnight 2019 focused on cocoa. Farmers of this much-loved product have seen prices fall to crisis levels in the last few years, making life incredibly difficult for them. This is especially true in West Africa where most of the cocoa is grown. A drop in cocoa prices means it’s more important than ever to highlight the importance of choosing Fairtrade products.
Green Weeks have been occurring on an annual basis since 2010, with the most recent taking place between 29 October and 2 November 2018.
During this event, we showcase key environmental projects from the University, hold inspiration talks, host exhibits from environmental charities and companies, and carry out campaigns.
The 2018 timetable included:
- 'How small changes make a big impact' presentation;
- An introduction to Cranfield Living Laboratory and Urban Observatory by Professor Jim Harris;
- Small Action, Big Impact stall;
- 'Recovering value from landfilled plastics' presentation;
- Allotment plot training;
- Honey harvesting - find out more by reading our 'Meeting the Bees' blog post.
If you are interested in participating in the next Green Week, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Great Cranfield Donate
The Great Cranfield Donate takes place on the Cranfield campus at the end of each academic year. It gives all students vacating their accommodation the chance to donate items to Emmaus, a local homelessness charity, and also helps to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill. The items may also go on to be re-loved by new students.
2018's Great Cranfield Donate saw a record breaking 2.7 tonnes of items donated and sent over to the local homeless community. Items donated included clothing, books, CDs, kitchenware, stationery and toys.
Cranfield University and the Wildlife Trust for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire work together as corporate partners.
Since 2015, our staff and students have supported the Wildlife Trust with volunteering events, namely scrub clearance and hedge laying tasks. We also support the Forest of Martson Vale with events such as tree planting.
We have won several awards from the Wildlife Trust.