The thirteenth Sustainable Development Goal is to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.

2022 progress report

Our organisation

The University was officially certified for ISO 50001 for its energy management system. Our Carbon Management Plan includes a target to reduce our carbon emissions to net zero by 2030.


During the year, we have continued to upgrade our infrastructure. A biomass boiler has been installed together with an air source heat pump. As well as upgrading the building management system and installing LED lighting, the University’s solar farm has been extended. The upgrades were made possible by an award of £4.9 million, through Phase 2 of the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme (PSDS).

In 2022, a new hydrogen refuelling station came on stream.


As we move to reduce greenhouse gas emissions significantly around the globe and work toward net zero, the need for knowledgeable, highly trained, highly skilled managers and engineers has arguably never been greater. We have addressed this need through a Global Environmental Change MSc, an Environmental Management for Business MSc, and Net Zero Industrial and Environment and Agrifood Net Zero scholarships to make our sustainability courses more accessible.


Highlights from our climate action research in 2021/22 included:

Cranfield partners with the National Centre for Atmospheric Science to host FAAM, a world-class research facility dedicated to gathering data to advance atmospheric science. FAAM operates a specially adapted research aircraft to make cutting edge measurements in the atmosphere, almost anywhere in the world. It serves scientists working in UK universities and at the Met Office and carries out work for UK Government bodies, commercial organisations, and international research bodies.


In 2022, Cranfield University was selected to help search for solutions to repair and regenerate our planet, as an official nominator for the prestigious 2022 Earthshot Prize.

Our schools visit for International Women in Engineering Day (INWED) included sustainability/climate action focused events.

The new Cranfield Aviation and the Environment Network Hub aims to create a forum for undertaking the challenging agendas of net zero and climate change related to aviation.

Supporting business

We continued to support businesses through short courses on climate action planning and we partnered with Rothamsted Research on the SHAKE climate change for agriculture programme to help entrepreneurs and start-ups who are combating climate change with science or tech-based ideas in the areas of agriculture and food production.

2021 progress report

We have set a number of ambitious, challenging environmental objectives in support of our Environmental Policy and Energy Code of Practice. They are managed through our ISO 14001-certified environmental management system, and through our ISO 150001:2011-certified energy management systems. An overarching Board for Energy and Environment of senior managers, supported by the Energy and Environment Team, is responsible for providing oversight and direction in managing our environmental impacts.

In 2021, Cranfield made the strategic appointment of Professor Chris Fogwill as Pro-Vice Chancellor of our School for Water, Energy and Environment. He is a climate scientist and Earth systems modeller and formerly led Keele University’s Institute for Sustainable Futures. He is now championing climate action for Cranfield.

For 'This is Engineering' Day 2021, we launched a collection of content and activities for schools, and the wider public, showcasing some of the great work taking place at Cranfield, and encouraging them to become climate change heroes.

At the end of 2021, we featured at COP26 in Glasgow as part of the Green Zone activity taking place during the summit. Audience members had the opportunity to take part in our Exploring Sustainable Futures Game, a role-playing learning experience used by the Sustainability group at Cranfield.

Courses/modules relating to the goal

The following courses either address sustainability entirely or contain modules that are focused on sustainability-related topics.

Advanced Air Mobility Systems MSc
Advanced Chemical Engineering MSc
Advanced Digital Energy Systems MSc
Advanced Heat Engineering MSc (discontinued)
Advanced Lightweight and Composite Structures MSc
Advanced Materials MSc
Advanced Mechanical Engineering MSc
Advanced Motorsport Engineering MSc
Advanced Motorsport Mechatronics MSc
Advanced Water Management MSc
Aerospace Dynamics MSc
Aerospace Manufacturing MSc
Aerospace Materials MSc
Aerospace Vehicle Design MSc
Air Transport Management MSc (Executive)
Air Transport Management MSc
Aircraft Engineering MSc
Airport Planning and Management MSc
Airworthiness MSc
Applied Bioinformatics MSc
Archaeomaterials MSc
Astronautics and Space Engineering MSc
Automotive Engineering MSc
Automotive Mechatronics MSc
Autonomous Vehicle Dynamics and Control MSc
Aviation Digital Technology Management MSc
Computational and Software Techniques in Engineering MSc 
Computational Fluid Dynamics MSc
Connected and Autonomous Vehicle Engineering MSc
Cyber-Secure Manufacturing MSc (discontinued)
Design Thinking MDes
Engineering and Management of Manufacturing Systems MSc
Environmental Engineering MSc
Environmental Management for Business MSc
Executive MBA 
Flight Dynamics MSc
Food Systems and Management MSc
Forensic Archaeology and Anthropology MSc
Future Food Sustainability MSc
Advanced GIS and Remote Sensing MSc
Global Environmental Change MSc
Global Product Development & Management MSc
Management and Corporate Sustainability MSc
Management and Information Systems MSc
Management and Leadership MSc
Management MSc
Manufacturing Technology and Management MSc
Operations Excellence MSc
Renewable Energy MSc
Robotics MSc
Postgraduate Engineer Apprenticeship
Sustainability MSc
Thermal Power and Propulsion MSc
Through-life System Sustainment MSc
Water and Sanitation for Development MSc
Water and Wastewater Engineering MSc