2022–23 achievements

Silwood Reactor Site Land Remediation:

The minor works team returned the brownfield site to grass, which was once the site of the nuclear reactor on Silwood Park Campus. This allows space to be used by students, bringing biodiversity improvements and benefits in respect of rainwater attenuation on the site.

Our commitments

  • Increase area of roof, walls, and spaces with improved biodiversity.
  • Increase number and variety of wildlife species recorded on our campuses.
  • Increase number of trees and drought resistant plants on campuses.

Our target for 2025–26 is to have a Biodiversity Action Plan implemented with our partners and progress verified independently. The Action Plan is currently running behind schedule but due to be developed in 2024.

Forward look towards 2024

Building on the baseline biodiversity audit, conducted as a student project for all campuses, this year the team will:

  • Develop SMART targets to achieve our biodiversity commitments.
  • Develop a costed action plan to deliver our biodiversity commitments.
  • Identify potential spaces for planting, using pollinator-friendly species.
  • Go to tender for the grounds contractor.

Case study: Our campuses in our education and research

Our campuses in our education and research

Overseas field courses can have clear benefits – like observing wildlife in ecosystems with minimal disturbance – but they also carry a carbon footprint cost. The Ecology Field Skills undergraduate course, designed by Dr Emma Ransome from the Department of Life Science, makes use of the UK’s diverse ecosystems to teach second-year Biological Sciences students about ecology, our impact and introduces them to practitioners at the forefront improving carbon sequestration and biodiversity though ecosystem restoration.

The students travel to our Silwood Park Campus (only 25 miles from central London) to learn about terrestrial ecosystems and how to manage these ecosystems responsibly to increase carbon capture.

Dr Bonnie Waring said “Silwood Park Campus has some of the world's largest field experiments for understanding the impacts of pollution and climate change, and a unique lab-to-field capacity that make it perfect for this course.”

In the module, students then travel to the UK’s first National Marine Park near Plymouth and an international perspective is shown through a range of video interviews and seminars with scientists and practitioners from different countries. Nell Pates, a recent graduate said, “This module showed us that you don’t need to go far to do meaningful and relevant ecology projects.”


2022–23 achievements

This year, we have completed a water reduction programme in partnership with ADSM, an organisation that helps others to use water in an environmentally sustainable way. We are currently on target with focused interventions underway.

Our commitments

  • Reduce total water consumption by 5% compared to baseline year 2022–23 by August 2026.
  • Reduce annual water consumption per person.
  • Install water control devices.

Forward look to 2024

Over the next year, the Estates team will:

  • Determine and agree the way forward for water reduction programme.
  • Establish SMART targets for water use across the Imperial Estate.