Enterprises across the South West constantly have to adapt in the face of the global climate emergency. But what are the most effective ways to overcome the challenges and unlock the many opportunities these new environmental practices can create?
Answering those questions and developing solutions that can work for organisations of all shapes and sizes are among the main aims of a new initiative from the University of Plymouth.
The £2.6 million Sustainability Hub: Low Carbon Devon project, supported by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), will harness the University’s expertise and experience in sustainability to benefit the county’s employers.
Through a range of coordinated activities, it will make the existing knowledge base easier to access for relevant businesses, embed graduate talent in the local economy and apply specialist research and development capacity to local low carbon and growth needs.
Led by the University’s Sustainable Earth Institute, the project will run until 2023. It will help some organisations reduce their own energy consumption and support others in the development of new initiatives and innovations that can be brought to the wider market.
At the centre of the project is the Sustainability Hub, a refurbished building at the heart of the University’s main campus that aims to be a catalyst for low-carbon economic growth.
It has created a space where employers can meet with researchers and business experts to learn what will work for their companies. It will also be used to trial and test new technologies and innovations – such as green walls and energy-saving LEDs – before they are applied in wider commercial settings.