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Climate Action Plan

Change the way we operate

Houseplants sit in front of an old TV with no signal
Houseplants sit in front of an old TV with no signal
Marianne Thomas, 2022 BA Graphic Communication Design, Central Saint Martins, UAL | Photograph: Marianne Thomas

To lead by example, we must first address our own operations.

In 2021, we committed to:

  • net zero total emissions by 2040 – a decade earlier than UK government targets net zero direct emissions by 2030
  • net zero direct emissions by 2030.

We have a strong track record of carbon reduction. In the last decade, we've reduced our emissions from utilities by 54%. We do not send any waste to landfill; it’s either recycled or used to produce energy.

Our net zero carbon pledges are far-reaching across our curriculum and through interactions within the Higher Education sector. We’re empowering students, staff and our creative community, to innovate and imagine a decarbonised future. Through collaboration with other universities, we’ll learn what’s working on the path to net zero.

We need to embed environmental stewardship across our estates, business operations and communities. We need purposeful policies which connect across UAL departments and sites.

Eight speakers inside clay sit on top of a wooden pallet, with folded grey material holding it up.
Alex Goodall, 2022 BA Sound Arts and Design, London College of Communication, UAL | Photograph: Luke Parry

What we’ll do

  • Set Science-Based Targets to chart our emissions reduction pathway. This is in line with the latest climate science and within a just share of the Global Carbon Budget.
  • Change how and what we consume as a university.
  • Reduce direct sources of carbon emissions – aiming to reach net zero direct emissions by 2030.
  • Reduce indirect sources of carbon emissions; to reach net zero by 2040.
  • Commit ourselves to climate justice in our job roles.

What we've done so far

In my role I think it’s important to understand the value of sustainability. We have an overview of everything that comes in and out of the building. We have segregated waste bins, recycling, hazardous waste and skips. We try to lead by example, making it clear and simple.

— Mina Ali, Facilities Manager at London College of Communication
A series of varying white shapes are laid out on the floor in front of Central Saint Martins
Hannah Scott, 2017 MA Art and Science, Central Saint Martins, UAL | Photograph: John Sturrock