Goal 15: Policies, processes and practices

The following page outlines specific policies, process and practices in support of Sustainable Development Goal 15 Life on land

Sustainably farmed food on campus 

We have several policies to ensure that food on campus is sustainably farmed, such as our Sustainable food policy , Animal welfare policy and Sustainable seafood policy.

Sustainable use, conservation and restoration of land 

Our Sustainable Future, our new Environmental Sustainability Strategy, highlights how we are ensuring the conservation, restoration and sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems associated with the University. On page 27 of the strategy, there are detailed commitments showcasing how we are, and plan to continue, working with nature. This includes:

  • Integrating biodiversity themes into current and future Estates strategy, with nature and green spaces an integral part of planning.
  • Increasing the quality and quantity of existing green space, achieving a 10% increase in urban green space by 2028, from 2018 levels.
  • Calculating a baseline and setting a target to provide a measurable improvement in biodiversity by 2030.
  • Guaranteeing zero reportable pollution incidents to air, land and water across the University estate.

Monitoring IUCN and other conservation species 

We identify, monitor and protect any IUCN Red Listed species and national conservation list species with habitats in areas affected by the operation of our University. Our Sustainable Future, our new Environmental Sustainability Strategy, highlights how we are working with and for nature. This includes monitoring and protecting habitats that conservation species may occupy on campus. We have identified four species listed as the UK Biodiversity Priority Species and two listed as amber on the Birds of Conservation Concern. Actions to preserve and protect these endangered have been put in place. 

Our cultural institution, Jodrell Bank, is recorded as having Great Crested Newt habitats. Mitigation of risk to these Red Listed species has been outlined in planning applications. To protect these species, we worked with the local services to relocate the newts to two new ponds in suitable great crested newt habitat. Since then we have put procedures in place to protect the newts during all construction projects at the site. 

Local biodiversity included in planning and development 

Biodiversity is considered as part of the Environmental Sustainability Project Tracker which is used to ensure the principles of environmental sustainability are embedded across new builds and major refurbishments during design and construction. 

The section on biodiversity aims to enhance site ecology by addressing spaces, species and activities of the area, considering a number of topics and setting specific targets to ensure that these are embedded. Opportunities to provide and increase green infrastructure and help to establish links with other areas of campus should be reviewed and there should be no net loss of green infrastructure. Opportunities for green roofs and walls should be considered to reduce surface water run-off and enhance biodiversity. An ecological baseline for the site should be determined and measures identified and implemented to achieve a net positive impact in terms of biodiversity. In line with the Living Campus Plan, proposals should contribute to the following: 

  1. Prioritise local species that benefit wildlife and prolong the flowering season.
    2. Support invertebrate diversity (e.g. bees, moths and butterflies) and numbers across campus.
    3. Help to preserve existing bird species (six priority species identified in the Living Campus Plan)
    4. Help to support Manchester’s bat populations. 

Trees should be retained and, where this is not possible, at least two new semi-mature trees are planted for every one removed. 

Examples include: 

  • MECD – green roof, tree planting, landscaping including species rich wildflower turf, plants for pollinators 
  • University Green – tree planting, plants for pollinators 
  • Henry Royce Institute Landscaping – tree planting, hedgerow planting, wildflowers, plants for pollinators 
  • GEIC Pocket Park 

Alien species on campus 

We have a policy to reduce the impact of alien species on campus by following UK Government guidelines in relation to invasive species. For example, we found Japanese Knotweed – an incredibly invasive species found across the UK and took steps to remove it on site. We ensure we manage our landscaping closely and when invasive species are discovered on campus, we contain them using approved herbicide (water based glyphosate) and make every effort for them to be disposed of as they should be by law.  

Land sensitive waste disposal 

We ensure that we adhere to UK government guidelines on water discharge and standards to uphold water quality and protect ecosystems, wildlife, and human health and welfare. We also have a target of zero pollution incidents for emissions and discharges, in our new Environmental Sustainability strategy (Section 5.6). 

We are reducing plastic waste on campus through our policies on plastics. Our webpage provides guidance on responsible use of plastic as well as responsible management of hazardous waste.

Our training procedures provide regulation and guidance to ensure the correct disposal of waste, covering hazardous materials. We provide guidance for hazardous waste identification, moving hazardous waste and record keeping in relation to hazardous waste.