7 February 2018

University wins top prize at CIBSE Building Performance Awards

The University of Oxford has won two 2018 Building Performance Awards from the Chartered Institute of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE). The awards recognise engineering excellence in the built environment, focusing on measured performance outcomes in low energy buildings, and pitched the University against the finest buildings and projects in the UK, not just those within the higher education sector.

CIBSE Award for Building Performance Award

Receiving the Building Performance Champion Award on behalf of the University, from left: Steve Pearson, Head of Building Services, Lucinda Lay, Carbon Reduction Projects Manager, Jennifer Makkreel, Deputy Head of Capital Projects, and Richard Jones, Head of Capital Projects.CIBSE BPA 2018

The University’s Carbon Management Programme won in the Facilities Management Team category and was also declared overall Building Performance Champion for its ‘outstanding contribution and commitment to achieving improved building performance, combined with significant, measurable reduction of energy consumption and carbon emissions.’

The £14.6m Carbon Management Programme is the main way in which the University aims to meet its ambitious target of slashing carbon emissions from its estate to 33% below 2005/6 levels by 2020/21. Established in 2011 and managed by the Estates Services Environmental Sustainability team, it has already reduced annual CO2 emissions by more than 5,800 tonnes and cut energy costs by nearly £1.4m a year.

For example, more than 1,500 photovoltaic panels have been installed on buildings under the programme, reducing annual carbon emissions by around 150 tonnes, and investment of more than £2 million in energy-efficient lighting has avoided more than 3,000 tonnes of annual carbon emissions. The University recently passed a key milestone towards achieving its sustainability goals, with carbon emissions falling beneath the 2005/6 baseline for the first time.

The Carbon Management Programme was praised by CIBSE for ‘providing a rigorous, strategic, all-encompassing approach to realise significant carbon reductions at the University whilst offering staff and students the opportunity to be involved in the process, and delivering data and learning to feed back into university and industry practices. The programme has inspired a host of collaborative initiatives,’ it says, ‘allowing new partnerships to develop between staff, students, the City Council and industry. The wide-ranging stakeholder engagement makes this programme particularly distinctive, with over 200 projects covering solar photovoltaic systems, lighting upgrades and building management system optimisation and developing skills, transferring knowledge and empowering users.’

The judges also commented that the University is leading the way for the higher education sector, not only in the global rankings of universities, but in the management of its extensive and diverse estate. In congratulating the University, CIBSE President, Peter Wong, said that the Carbon Management Programme ‘demonstrates the innovation and excellence in performance that these awards celebrate … and goes beyond what we thought was possible in pursuit of outstanding performance levels that should become the norm.’

For more information about the awards visit the CIBSE website.