St Edmund’s Hall Principal Katherine Willis has announced St Edmund’s 10-year strategy, which focuses on making the college greener, more diverse and more accessible.
The college’s estates strategy presents its vision as becoming “the greenest and most environmentally sustainable college in Oxford”, as well as meeting the needs of the college community.
The strategy includes a number of notable environmental pledges. The college aims to reduce energy usage by 5% every 5 years, by undertaking an “environmental audit of the entire estate” and taking steps such as “improving insulation, reducing draughts and using heating management schemes”.
The college intends to be “as close as possible to zero net energy use, e.g. implementing energy production through open loop geothermal energy, solar panels, biodigesters and other means.”
The college has also pledged to “examine all our activities in college that have an environmental impact and transition to more sustainable alternatives, e.g. reducing the use of single-use plastics, installing more green walls and improving levels of recycling”.
This news comes in the wake of St Edmund Hall’s new, “living wall”, which is 39 square metres, and is made up of over a dozen plant varieties.
The wall is designed to improve air quality, improve insulation and protect the building from the elements.
Along with these environmental commitments, the college has also made a number of pledges to improve diversity and access within St Edmund’s Hall.
Among these are promises to create funds dedicated to removing financial barriers to applying or continuing further study at the college, formulating a college statement on diversity and ensuring that all the college’s estates are fully accessible.