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Which is the greenest uni?

Obviously, you want to find the best uni for you, but which is best for the planet? Now students can think about the impact on the environment when choosing where to study thanks to the new Green League, compiled by People and Planet, a student campaign network.

In the hope of pushing a few unis into being a bit more environmentally friendly, the League shows which are as green as Kermit’s love-child and which are stamping a carbon footprint with oversized Doc Martens.

Nottingham Trent got the biggest pat on the back, with LSE not far behind. Meanwhile the poor environmental record of Royal College of Music and Lampeter means they fail miserably to qualify for a green mortarboard.

Universities are given a ranking from a First to a Fail based on eleven factors, including the number of staff devoted to managing environmental impact, how much waste they chuck out and what types of energy they use. The results show that many unis have bucked their ideas up when it comes to loving the planet. There are more environmental managers than ever before and the number of ethical investment policies has doubled.

Also, more universities were keen to get involved and show off their tree-hugging credentials. Of the 131 universities eligible for inclusion, 127 provided enough information to be ranked in the League.

Disappointingly, universities well-known for their research into sustainability and climate change turned out to be better at lecturing the rest of us than learning the lessons themselves. For example, the University of Oxford, home to the Environmental Change Institute and the School of Enterprise & The Environment, ranked just 84th in the league.

While many universities are taking steps to be more environmental aware, a lot more still needs to be done. Ian Leggett, Director of People and Planet, congratulated all the unis which were awarded “a first class degree”, but warned that “the 2009 Green League makes it crystal clear too many universities have failed to recognise the importance of becoming a model low carbon institution”.

To view the Green League table click here


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