Loughborough ranked first in UK and 15th globally for advancing affordable and clean energy

The Times Higher Education (THE) Impact Rankings have placed Loughborough University first in the UK and 15th globally for advancing Affordable and Clean Energy – the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7.

The Impact Rankings are an international measurement for assessing universities’ performance in moving forward the United Nations’ 17 SDGs. These were adopted by the UN in 2015 as a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure shared peace and prosperity for all people by 2030.

Loughborough’s success in the rankings is testament to its world-leading research and commitment to affordable and clean energy. In 2021 the University launched a new multi-million-pound research centre to help support vulnerable populations in the Global South shape and benefit from the transition to sustainable energy.

One of the core objectives of the Centre for Sustainable Transitions: Energy, Environment and Resilience (STEER) is to work with partners across the world, from decision-makers to energy poor communities, to make SDG 7 a reality.

Another new national facility, aimed at increasing our understanding of how solar cells and other electronic devices that interact with light work, is due to open on the campus. Funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, the National Facility for High Resolution Cathodoluminescence (CL) Analysis will be the first of its kind globally and open to researchers from around the world.

Academics are also working on the design and development of a four-wheeled electric vehicle for research, teaching and outreach in India. It is hoped the collaborative international project will help the 1.3bn-strong country increase clean vehicle uptake, improve urban air quality and meet carbon emission targets.

The University has made clear its commitment to sustainability with its new strategy, Creating Better Futures. Together, placing Climate Change and the move to Net-Zero at the heart of Loughborough’s work.

It has already made great strides in its efforts to reduce the carbon footprint of its operations and achieve the University goal to be Net-Zero by 2035. In May it opened its first Passivhaus development, widely regarded as one of the most challenging energy efficiency and comfort standards in the world.

Loughborough University was also ranked joint 61st globally for SDG 8 – Decent Work and Economic Growth in the Times Higher Education Impact Rankings, which include 1,591 universities from 112 countries/regions.