Background and context
There is real urgency to this work. Schools in England generate roughly the same amount of greenhouse gas emissions as all the energy and transport of Birmingham and Manchester put together. Changing this is now the law. Local authorities have to monitor the energy performance of individual schools and publicly report under the Carbon Reduction Commitment. There needs to be a culture of sustainable development embedded into all areas of school life.
Making a school sustainable is partly about the smart application of technological solutions, but it’s overwhelmingly about the ethos and ambitions of a school leading to behaviour change. To this end, the government has recently invested £12 million to provide schools with free energy display meters so that they can measure and reduce their electricity use.
Making a school run more sustainably is challenging. The issues are complex and school staff may have received little or no relevant training.
We believe that two areas need to be addressed before a school can successfully improve its sustainability:
- Staff need to be interested and understand how this work complements their normal role
- Staff need to feel knowledgeable and empowered to make decisions
Please follow the links above to read more about addressing these requirements.