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2021-22 emissions data

University of Leeds greenhouse gas emissions data is reported annually to the Higher Education Statistics Authority (HESA). The data reported on this page and in the downloadable emissions data sheet reflects that reported to HESA, with the addition of estimates for agricultural emissions from the University farm and fugitive emissions from air-conditioning units. All figures are in tonnes of COequivalent emissions.

Emissions data

Emissions Source2019-202020-212021-22
Scope 1 and 2 emissions (includes vehicles)43,66143,56543,502
Scope 1 – agricultural emissions (estimated)-1,4291,429
Scope 1 – fugitive emissions (estimated)-728174
Total scope 1 and 2 emissions43,66145,72245,105
Scope 3 – business travel6,3984103,278
Scope 3 – staff commuting3,5723,8753,004
Scope 3 – student commuting1,0551,7012,550
Scope 3 – waste, water and wastewater696286346
Scope 3 – supply chain109,421102,128122,684
Total scope 3 emissions excl supply chain121,142108,400131,862
Total scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions164,803154,122176,967
Offsetting of emissions-- 1,000-
Net emissions164,803155,122176,967


Energy based scope 1 and 2 emissions showed a slight drop year on year. This was largely driven by energy management measures and a switch to electric vehicles across the University fleet.

Scope 1 agricultural emissions have been recalculated since the initial estimates were made, and are now estimated at 1,429 tonnes CO2 equivalent emissions for both 2020-21 and 2021-22. Total scope 1 and 2 emissions combined have reduced very slightly from 45,722 tonnes to 45,105 tonnes.

Within emissions categorised as 'scope 3', business travel emissions increased following the removal of Covid-19 travel restrictions, but are still below pre-Covid levels. Overall commuting emissions remained broadly level year on year, however the figures showed a decrease in staff commuting emissions, with a contrasting increase in student commuting emissions. It should be noted that no travel survey took place in 2020-21, and the 2021-22 survey had low student responses, so whilst this may be reflective of changing commute habits the figures should be viewed with caution. Steps have been taken to increase the response rate for future surveys.

Supply chain emissions have shown an increase, reflective of staff and students returning to on campus work and study following the impact of Covid-19 throughout 2020-21. There have also been changes in the categorisation of the spend data used to calculate emissions. Business services, medical & precision instruments and information & communication technologies were the most significant contributors to scope 3 emissions.

For any queries on these figures please contact

Delivering net zero by 2030

Image shows the words 'CLIMATE PLAN' on a black background, alongside 'Delivering Net Zero by 2030' on a blue background.

Delivering net zero by 2030 is one of seven principles of the University of Leeds Climate Plan that was approved in November 2021. Our Pathway to Net Zero sets out our approach to reaching net zero emissions by 2030 for our core carbon footprint, and work towards zero direct emissions by 2050.  An investment of more than £150m has been committed against our net zero pathway.

You can find more information on our plans to reduce emissions and our progress to date on our Net Zero web pages, or via the Climate Plan Sharepoint Hub (University log in required).

2021-22 Emissions Data Sheet

Download a copy of the 2021-22 Emissions Data Sheet.