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The power is in your hands

Energy, Carbon and Water

Energy use in buildings is one of the most significant elements of BU’s Carbon Footprint. BU are investing in energy efficient equipment such as lighting, building management controls, boilers and heating distribution systems to help run the estate as efficiently as possible. Students and staff can also play a key role in helping us to save energy.

Student Switch Off

Student Switch Off (SSO) is an NUS energy saving competition for students living in halls of residence at Bournemouth. It gives students the chance to win prizes such as Ben and Jerry’s ice cream and summer ball tickets by saving energy for their hall over the course of the year and by taking part in a series of competitions including a climate change quiz.


In 2017/18, 355 students across six halls signed up to Student Switch Off. All six halls reduced their energy usage with the average reduction from baseline figures across all halls coming in at 8%.

 Dorchester House was the winning hall and they reduced their electricity consumption by 8% compared to 2013/14 and 2014/15. This equates to saving 37,719 kWh and 15 tonnes of CO2.

662 students took part in the Climate Change Quizzes and 10 students participated in Ambassador training. Ambassadors receive a reference from the NUS which they can put on their CV. Check out the 2017/18 Student Switch Off Campaign report (pdf 378kb).

How to get involved

Find out more online or ask at your halls reception. 

How does this help BU?

Student Switch Off contributes to meeting our 40% carbon reduction target by 2020 from 2005/6 baselines. You can read more in our Carbon Management Plan (pdf 516kb) and annual report (pdf 384kb). BU regularly reports its Carbon emissions and also monitors indirect Scope 3 emissions (pdf 243kb).

Other steps we're taking to save energy

BU has had a Carbon Management Plan since 2009 and has been implementing a wide range of energy and water-saving projects to save money and carbon. Examples include installing efficient LED lighting, a biomass boiler, two ground source heat pumps and a number of solar panel arrays.

The Carbon Management Plan was refreshed in 2016 and the target is to reduce carbon emissions by 40% by 2020/21 against the 2005/6 baseline. This is an ambitious target given BU's growth plans. To attempt to meet it BU will continue to invest in the estate and to encourage all staff and students to play their part in helping to reduce carbon emissions. The plan builds on all the good work to date and sets out the key initiatives we will implement as we work towards the target. 

Things you can do

Turn off monitors, lights and any other equipment when not in use.
Take the stairs rather than the lift.
Report wasted energy and water to the sustainability team.
Keep up to date with everything sustainable at BU on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.