Action areas

Reducing our environmental impact does not just come down to technology. We are just as responsible in how we use our buildings and what choices we make when we are in them.‌

Changing our behaviour can be a quick and cost effective way of saving energy, creating a positive change and reducing our impact on the environment. At London Metropolitan University we are looking at ways in which we can help people who want to be at the centre of positive change.

In this section, you will find many areas where you can help us make a difference. 

London Metropolitan University is proud of the actions we have taken to reduce our carbon footprint by 66% (2016-2017) based on a 2009 baseline. We have set a target to reduce our Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions by 50% by 2020 and achieved our target four years early. This target will be revised in 2018-19. 

To find out more about how we have achieved this reduction please watch our video:

To achieve our carbon reduction target we have published a Carbon management plan  which sets out projects we will undertake over the next few years.

The University has installed its first renewable energy with 221 photovoltaic panels installed on the Science Centre.  This will produce enough electricity to run 14 houses, saving the University around £13,500 per annum.

 Solar panels, Science Centre

We have upgraded the availability of drinking water and have created maps annotated with the locations of drinking water. We have installed 18 new water fountains in Holloway Road campus in academic year 2016-17 and project was completed in January 2017.

In addition, all of our catering outlets owned by Chartwells (Goulston Street, Moorgate, Tower and Learning Centre) provide free drinking water. 

Holloway Road water map

Science Centre water map

Learning Centre water map

Moorgate water map

Calcutta House Water Map


In 2015 we introduced new recycling bins and appointed a new waste contractor Paper Round to increase our recycling rate from 25% to 80%. None of the University’s waste goes to landfill.

Food  – each staff kitchen has a brown food waste bin for any food leftovers.

Coffee Grounds - You can bring your own bag or we can reuse one of our coffee bean bags. Please register your interest by emailing Coffee grounds are a great fertilizer and pest repellent, and you can also add it to your compost for a nitrogen rich boost.

Coffee Cups - recycle your single use hot drink cup at following locations across the campus - Highbury Canteen, Costa Blue Met, Atrium Cafe, The Junstion, Costa Library, Costa Moorgate.

General waste and mixed recycling - please use our dual bins black (general) & green (mixed recycling)

Paper - blue bins (found by the printers)

Batteries – red battery bin boxes are available in libraries, student Hubs, ICT and Estates.

Clothes – yellow TRAID boxes are provided in each building. 

We recognise that plastic use has a great environmental impact and have been taking some steps to reduce the use of plastic on campuses.

Reusable Travel Cups  - The best way to remove plastic is to stop using it in the first place; a reusable mug reduces the amount of plastic waste we dispose of. We have new bamboo coffee cup available to purchase in all our outlets.

London Met bamboo cups are available our cafes - Moorgate, Blue Met and Learning Centre and the Junction.

Compostable takeout containers –the best way to stop plastic is to stop purchasing it entirely, for instances where this is not possible we have been using compostable containers on all campus outlets in order to reduce the amount of plastic on campus.

Reusable water bottles – rather than buying bottled water, use a refillable water bottle instead. There are numerous water fountains across campus and you can request a refill at our campus cafes. 

What can you do?

The university is taking steps to reduce plastic usage but we cannot do this without the help of our staff and students. Below are some ways you can help reduce plastic waste on campus:

Join the Plastic Challenge 

Take on the Plastic Challenge and join the growing community of people saying goodbye to single-use plastic. Sign up and receive tips and ideas for living single-use plastic-free - The Plastic Challenge!
Download ''Living without single-use Plastic'' guide and start to take an action!

Plastic bags
The 5p charge for plastic bags was introduced in England in October 2015 and since then there has been an 85% reduction in their usage. You can reduce plastic bags by carrying a reusable bag with you when you go shopping.

If you are responsible for purchasing items at the university there are some ways you can help to reduce plastic:

  • Reduce the amount you purchase – only buy things when absolutely necessary. Try to consolidate ordering so you use less packaging, you can do this by buying less frequently, or ordering for the whole building, school or department.
  • Try having a stationery amnesty or making an inventory of all items to make sure you don’t order items unnecessarily.
  • Contact your suppliers and request they use less plastic packaging.
  • Contact your suppliers and request they take back their packaging and treat it responsibly e.g. reuse, recycle.
  • If you are responsible for tendering for new products you can write into the specifications that they reduce the amount of plastic used or run take back schemes.

19% of our carbon savings have come through ICT upgrades and improvements. We have worked hard to reduce our environmental impact through ICT usage and continue to look at new ways we can work.

Some of the projects we have implemented are:

  • Print centralisation programme – reducing number of printers from 2000 to 200
  • Use of “Follow me” printers so staff and students need to present ID card to print
  • Use FSC accredited paper
  • Installed new MRFs which have three levels of power saving – they learn the time of day people print so wake themselves up at this time
  • Recycle toner cartridges
  • Automatic shut down on PCs which is adjusted for term and recess time
  • PCs constructed locally in St Albans
  • Purchasing Energy Star compliant computers
  • Presence detectors on monitors
  • Working with delivery company to group computers to reduce amount of deliveries required

London Metropolitan University is committed creating a food system that benefits our community, food producers, and our environment. Our caterers are working with the vendors, and local farmers and suppliers to achieve real food that is produced through means that promote social justice and environmental sustainability.

Here are some standards Catering Team are supporting by taking part in Soil Association Food for Life Catering Mark and have achieved Bronze Award in November 2018. The Food for Life Catering Mark is an independent endorsement, backed by annual inspections, to improve the food we serve.

Our caterers meet the following standards:
  • Catering Team are supported with skills training in fresh food preparation and the Catering Mark.
  • All suppliers have been verified to ensure they apply appropriate food safety standards.
  • Information is on display about food provenance.
  • Menus are seasonal and in-season produce is highlighted.
  • Eggs are from free range hens.
  • Free drinking water is prominently available.
  • No genetically modified ingredients are used.
  • No undesirable additives or artificial trans fats are used.
  • At least 75% of dishes on the menu are freshly prepared (on site or at a local hub kitchen) from unprocessed ingredients.

Here are some tips for eating more sustainably while still enjoying healthy and delicious meals at our catering.

Go meatless

Production of meat, particularly beef, is extremely resource intensive. To reduce your environmental footprint, try incorporating some meatless meals into your diet.

All our meet and poultry is Red Tractor Assured and from farms which satisfy UK animal welfare standards.

Sustainable seafood

Overfishing and other harmful fishing practices have pushed many of the world’s fisheries to the brink of collapse. You can help protect aquatic ecosystems by selecting seafood that is caught or farmed responsibly. We now serve MSC certified fish and maximise use of fish on the Marine Conservation Society’s (MCS) ‘fish to eat’ list. No fish are served from the Marine Conservation Society ‘fish to avoid’ list.

Look for Fairtrade products

Catering are committed to increasing the use and sale of Fairtrade products and ingredients wherever possible. At the moment our catering outlets uses 55 Fairtrade products and will continue to be actively involved in raising awareness of Fairtrade.


We use biodegradable packaging and have implemented salad and breakfast bar stations as well as yogurt bar and are working to increase our recycling rates throughout next Academic year 2019/20.

Our new bamboo coffee cups are available to purchase at all our outlets.

Food in The Junction

Cycle parking spaces are available in the following locations:

Tower Building Next to reception 20 cycle hoops
Tower Building Back of Highbury Canteen Covered cycle shelter access via gate 8 (10 spaces)
Tower By TSG-01 leading to Highbury Canteen. Closest reception - The Rocket 10 lockers for folding bicycles
Graduate Centre Next to Graduate Centre entrance 10 cycle hoops
Learning Centre/Science Centre Carpark between Science Centre and Learning Centre Covered cycle shelter with 14 spaces, request access from Science Centre reception
Learning Centre Outside the building 16 cycle hoops
Goulston Street/Old Castle Street Between Goulston Street and Old Castle Street Covered cycle shelter with 10 spaces, access via Goulston Street, request access from reception, 
Goulston Street/Old Castle Street Between Goulston Street and Old Castle Street 28 lockers for folding bicycles
Goulston Street Outside the building 9 cycle hoops
Goulston Street Outside the building, on east side of street outside the library windows 4 cyclestands are installed on east side of street
outside the library windows, parallel to kerb
Calcutta House Old Castle Street, east side of street south of Pomell Way 3 cycle stands on east side of street south of Pommell Way, in line with trees/existing cycle stands
Calcutta House Old Castle Street 9 onsite cycle hoops next to Calcutta House and Calcutta House Annex
Calcutta House

Old Castle Street, west side of street adjacent to Calcutta House

3 cycle stands on west side of street adjacent to Calcutta House, parallel to kerb, immediately north of existing cycle stands
Moorgate Basement, MGB-22 12 lockers for folding bicycles. Request a key from Moorgate reception

If you would like to find more information about parking spaces around City campuses, please visit City of London bike parking map.

Using Santander bikes? Docking stations are close to Old Castle Street and Goulston Street.

You can also find more information about cycling on our Facebook page London Met cycling and read our Cycling tips

Cycle Skills sessions

Everyone who studies in the borough of Islington and Tower Hamlets can get a free cycle skills training sessions! 

Islington Council cycle skills sessions

Tower Hamlets cycle skills sessions

Dr. Bike free maintenance sessions at the University:

Outside Holloway Road reception, 12-2pm
7 May
21 May
Outside Goulston Street reception, 12-2pm
11 April
8 May
22 May

Upcoming public Dr Bike events in Islington

Outside Islington Town Hall on Upper Street: 4pm-7pm on the first Wednesday of every month, .

In the middle of Navigator Square, Archway: 4pm-7pm on the third Tuesday of every month.

If you want to attend one of Dr Bike events, there’s no need to book – just turn up on the day.

Upcoming public Dr Bike events in Tower Hamlets

Every third Saturday of each month, 11am-3pm
Limehouse Town Hall, 646 Commercial Road E14 7HA [map] On National Cycle Network Route 1 opposite junction with Salmon Lane. NB: The postcode above covers a wide area - map searches are not usually accurate. Try postcode E14 7HR for navigation purposes. This will take you to the end of Newell Street. Limehouse Town Hall is on the corner of Newell Street/Commercial Road. Entrance is on Commercial Road.

NUS offer 10% student discount at local Holloway Road Cycle Surgery shop.

Finsbury Cycles offer 10% discount on accessories and 5% discount on bikes for students and staff.

There are various cycle applications everyone can try for free such as:

Cycle Maps

We often have cycle maps available to take away during our events. Otherwise simply order your area map from Tfl website at any time!


We have lockers for folding bicycles at Moorgate, Holloway Road and at Calcutta House/Old Castle Street.

You can get the keys for various location lockers in few easy steps:

Old Castle Street Lockers:

  1. Log in to our e-shop:
  2. Make a refundable deposit of £10
  3. Bring receipt and staff ID to room CMG-60, Calcutta House and collect locker key. 

Holloway Road lockers:

  1. Log in to our e-shop:
  2. Make a refundable deposit of £10
  3. Bring receipt and student/staff ID to Tower Building reception and collect locker key. 

Moorgate Basement lockers:

You can request a key from Moorgate reception.

Shower facilities

You can use the gym changing rooms and showers at the following locations:

  • Tower Building Benwell Extension on the third floor next to the sports hall and dance studio
  • Gym changing rooms and shower at the Science centre
  • Calcutta House ground floor Fitness Room

Green spaces

Although within the University we are limited in our green spaces we try to make the most of what we have. We have restored the gardens at Old Castle Street to their original glory including Dublin Bay roses, ivy and crocuses. We have undertaken two projects at the Tower Courtyard. Estates staff undertook a “Big Dig” to plant a wildflower meadow to encourage insects, installed bird boxes and bee hotels. Staff and students also planted over 600 spring bulbs to brighten up the courtyard in spring.‌

In Holloway road campus Green Zone lounge patio has also been transformed in place where everyone can enjoy their break away from studies. Beautiful evergreen shrubs and variety of flowers were planted to brighten up the space.

Vibrant space – The Calcutta House rooftop garden!

The garden on the roof of Calcutta House provides a unique space to relax and socialise. Meet your friends, have lunch, study or use it for group workshops – the garden is open until dusk and we invite all students to visit it!

We have planted various edible plants such as varieties of mint, rosemary, beans and salad.

We also have a roof garden at the Holloway Road campus with Gardening Club taking place every Wednesday 12-1pm. Last year we grew strawberries, beans, herbs, tomatoes, lettuce and raspberries. 

London Met bees

This year we have installed two beehives on top of the roof in our Holloway campus with 40,000 bees harvesting honey every day. Follow us @GreenLondonMet to receive updates and read our news story to find out more about this project. 

You can also watch bees live online.

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