Active and sustainable commuting

We estimate that commuting to and from campus made up 9% of our carbon footprint in 2018/19. We are addressing this through an ambitious active and sustainable travel plan.

Our active and sustainable travel plan contains three strategic goals:

  • promoting active travel
  • promoting decarbonised public transport
  • reducing fossil fuel dependent car journeys.

We will promote active travel by introducing a new active travel reward app for our students and staff by August 2021. This will allow us to record the carbon footprint of participating staff and students when they commute to and from campus. It will also allow us to set challenges and competitions that result in rewards and benefits, such as free coffees, in partnership with Brighton & Hove City Council.

Promoting active travel is important because it will both reduce our emissions and contribute to our staff and students’ health and wellbeing, which is a key UN Sustainable Development Goal in its own right.

As part of our drive to increase sustainable and active travel, we will promote an increase in cycling through measures including: continued provision of a Cycle to Work Scheme, reintroduction of critical mass cycle trains, cycle maintenance and safety training, more Brighton Bike Share Scheme bikes, secure cycle storage, e-bike charging points and showers on campus.

We will seek to provide some of these improved cycle facilities alongside better public transport facilities on campus by commissioning a feasibility study by August 2021 into the creation of a new sustainable travel hub.

We will do this alongside a review of all signage, cycle lanes and pedestrian paths on our campus to ensure that they are optimised for a substantial increase in sustainable travel by August 2025.

While active travel is great for those who can participate, we recognise that it is not suitable for everyone so we will work hard with our local strategic partners to improve the sustainability and quality of public transport to and from campus. This will include lobbying for the further decarbonisation of local bus routes and seeking further discounts if possible for our staff and students to use public transport.

Similarly, a certain percentage of our staff will need to continue to travel by car. However, we want to support lower-carbon car journeys so we will look to introduce progressive parking charges where cleaner vehicle users pay less – subject to a full equality analysis by August 2023.

We will also encourage greater ride sharing and investigate creating a new ultra-low emission vehicle (ULEV) leasing scheme for staff, based on salary sacrifice (like our Cycle to Work Scheme), which would make it cheaper to drive an ULEV on account of tax benefits, by January 2022. We will also make all of the University’s vehicle fleet ultralow emissions by 2025 by only procuring and leasing new vehicles that are ULEVs.

The above actions will enable us to set annual targets for increasing active and sustainable travel to and from campus from August 2022 onwards.