UCL News


UCL retains First-Class status in University 'Green' League

10 December 2021

The People & Planet University League 2021, which assess the environmental performance of Higher Education institutions, has awarded UCL ‘First-Class’ Honours for the fifth consecutive time.

An image of a man in a green hoody and with brown hair planting some lavender The independent rankings, published by The Guardian, place UCL as fourth highest among Russell Group universities and 19th out of 154 UK institutions.  

Richard Jackson, UCL Director of Sustainability, said: “I’m really pleased to retain our First-Class status in the Green League in what has been a challenging year. This demonstrates the strides we have taken to embed the principles of sustainability into our processes and plans.

“The score reflects the foundations that have been put in place for future reductions in our environmental impacts as well as creating a positive environmental and social legacy through our operational, educational and research activity.”

Ranked across 13 metrics of sustainability, from energy sources and waste to sustainable food, UCL received an overall score of 68.6% – an increase of 10.4 percentage points on the last league, published in 2019.

UCL received scores of 100% in five of the 13 categories: policy and strategy; staff; environmental auditing and management systems; staff and student engagement; and education for sustainable development. 

Professor Geraint Rees, Dean of UCL Faculty of Life Sciences and Chair of UCL’s Sustainability Steering Group, said: “I am delighted that UCL has continued to perform very strongly in the People & Planet University League. It shows UCL’s strengths as well as areas for improvement, but perhaps more important it shows our ambition to embed a focus on the practical actions necessary for sustainability across the entire institution.”

Compiled by the UK’s largest student campaigning network, People & Planet’s University League is the only comprehensive and independent league table of UK universities, ranking UK institutions by their environmental and ethical performance based on an evolving set of criteria.



  • Credit: Sustainable UCL