Forty-four higher education institutions (HEIs) have been awarded a share of £25 million from the Revolving Green Fund, a partnership fund between HEFCE and Salix Finance. The fund enables HEIs to radically transform their approaches to energy consumption and reducing emissions.

HEIs have applied for funds through two strands: an institutional small projects (ISP) fund and a transformational fund for large, one-off projects. Over 100 expressions of interest have been received for the two strands, demonstrating a high level of interest. In total £30 million is available for the Revolving Green Fund, of which £10 million is allocated for the transformational fund and £20 million for the ISP fund.

Steve Egan, Deputy Chief Executive of HEFCE, said: 'Higher education has a substantial contribution to make in the area of sustainable development. The level of interest shown in this fund demonstrates that institutions are embracing this agenda, and we believe that this funding will significantly contribute to the higher education sector's efforts in this area'.

Alastair Keir, Chief Executive of Salix Finance adds: 'Energy-saving practices benefit the bottom line as well as reducing CO2 emissions; it is often the simplest of changes that can have the biggest impacts. The savings made from easy to implement projects ultimately free up vital resources to be spent on improvements to core services and facilities.'

Under the transformational fund, the £10 million of funding was allocated to three HEIs, for projects submitted by the University of East Anglia, Harper Adams University College and Lancaster University:

The University of East Anglia project will establish a biomass energy centre at its Norwich campus. The project is set to become the first biomass gasification combined heat and power plant in England.

Harper Adams University College's project will look into anaerobic digestion for renewable energy production. The project will use farm waste and food waste streams diverted from landfill to generate renewable power.

The Lancaster University project aims to significantly reduce CO2 emissions from electricity consumption, reduce reliance on imported electricity, and address the major global threats of climate change and resource depletion.

Each of these HEIs will add further resources from their own funds, leveraging an additional £9.1 million in total. Institutional small projects (ISP) fund Thirty HEIs have been funded for the first round of the ISP fund.

Together with the 11 HEIs already working with Salix, they will share £14.8 million. All of this money is to be spent on energy and carbon-saving projects.