Two years of petitions, meetings, letters and lobbying from our Campaigns Forum have finally paid off: the University of Reading is now using 100 percent green electricity. We - a core group of about 15 students - identified the people in the university who had the power to make the switch, and over a long period we lobbied them in various ways.

We began with a petition, collecting more than 1,000 signatures in stalls, in halls and by staging events around the campus.   Over the next six months, we met the department's staff regularly to convince them of our case.

After extensive consultation, Reading adopted a new energy policy. This ensured that green electricity, as long as it was financially viable, would be given first preference whenever the university's energy contract came up for renewal.

Then, the university staff did their research and moved their energy contracts to 100 percent renewable sources with Scottish and Southern Energy, without any increase in cost. And thanks to our energy policy, when they renew the contract in two years' time, they will most likely stay green.

Our victory is a clear example of how students working together can make significant changes for the better. However, not content with this, we are now pressing the university on recycling and energy efficiency. We also want it to employ full-time environmental management personnel to make the whole university more environmentally friendly.

In the future, we hope the rest of the higher education sector will follow our lead. All universities should obtain quotations for the supply of green electricity and make a public commitment to switch to a green supply as soon as possible.

There is no reason to wait for a top-down solution from the Government. The time to act is now, and with green electricity becoming more and more widely available, institutions, businesses and individuals alike can easily make the switch today.

Photo:  Edward (far right), and fellow students, Ali and Tom, meet with the Vice Chancellor and the Director of Facilities Management to discuss the Campaigns Forum Green Electricity campaign.

The latest updates


Thousands participate for a global bike ride raising Arctic awareness

Blog by Gustavo Ampugnani | September 16, 2013

Yesterday 14,000 people took the streets in 36 countries to demonstrate their willing to save the Arctic by riding theirs bicycles in the Global Day of Action organized by Greenpeace. And Washington DC was part of it. Together with Greenpeace … ...

Google pressures largest US utility company to put renewable energy on the menu

Blog by Gary Cook | April 19, 2013

Thanks to some pressure from Google, the largest utility company in the U.S., Duke Energy, now plans to offer renewable energy to its major customers.  This will allow Google, who also announced plans today to double the size of one … Continue...

21 groups call for moratorium on Powder River coal in letter to new Interior...

Blog by Joe Smyth | April 15, 2013

The leaders of 21 organizations welcomed Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell to her first day on the job today with a letter calling for “an immediate moratorium on new coal leasing in the Powder River Basin and a comprehensive … Continue...

Next Stop North Pole

Image gallery | April 11, 2013

North Pole Expedition Continues

Image gallery | April 9, 2013

Team Aurora Leave Barneo Base

Image gallery | April 8, 2013

Team Aurora

Image gallery | April 5, 2013

What do the climate-denying Koch Brothers have to do with March Madness?

Blog by Cassady Sharp | March 29, 2013

Thanks to Zack Beauchamp and John Halpin at Think Progress for this great piece on the Koch Brothers’ funding behind Florida Gulf Coast University, recent NCAA upset team. The Koch brothers push their funding and climate denial agenda to several...

The Myth of China's Endless Coal Demand: A missing market for US Exports

Publication | February 27, 2013 at 0:07

The US coal industry - reeling from sagging domestic demand, plummeting profits, and tanking stock prices - is desperate for a new market for its wares, and it thinks it has found one in China. But in reality, the Chinese market for US coal...

71 - 80 of 1363 results.