Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE), Manipal is an ISO 9001:2008 and 14001:2004 certified campus, following a series of voluntary ISO standards on Quality and Environmental Management Systems (Q&EMS). The EMS certification came in 2008, following a clearly-articulated Environment Management System. The Environment and Energy Policy is our guiding document that enables the University to achieve continual improvement over time.
Environment and Energy Policy:
Manipal Academy of Higher Education endeavors to promote community welfare, environmental protection and efficient energy use to a level of performance that moves “beyond compliance”. Striving to set a benchmark on a National and International level for education, healthcare, environment and energy management. MAHE is committed to cleaner and greener campuses*. To realize this vision, the University commits to:
Institutionalize best practices, comply with applicable laws, regulations, and other recognized requirements related to environment and energy use and where practicable exceed them.
Preventing pollution by continually monitoring and improving its environmental and energy performance by provision of resources to achieve set objectives and targets
Establish and maintain management systems to improve energy performance and to minimize harmful effects on environment, human health and safety
Promote use of clean, safe and energy efficient technologies in order to utilize natural resources efficiently
Encourage transparency and communication of its commitment to sustainable development, simultaneously increasing awareness amongst its stakeholders as well as the community at large
Foster education, research and information exchange on energy and environmental development to move toward global sustainability
*Includes main campus, off campus and off shore campuses.
Environmental best practices within MAHE campus
We work within the framework of the Energy & Environment Policy and consider the environment as a ‘living’ entity that we sustain and protect even as we go about our daily activities.
So, what are the concrete steps we need to take to actually make this Policy work on the ground in MAHE?
Key focus areas
Solid waste management
Biomedical waste is segregated at source in a strictly-implemented regimen, using color coded bins. Individual units send their biomedical waste to a central unit from where authorized agencies pick it up at regular intervals. They ensure the waste is treated and disposed of in a safe manner. Education and training form an important part of the effective implementation of disposal processes; they are also a critical indicator, not only from the environmental point of view but also from the standpoint of employee and patient safety. Hazardous and e-waste similarly are segregated at source and recycled by Authorized agencies.
Waste water management
For management of our water resources, we scrupulously adhere to the 3 R’s: Reduce, Recycle, Reuse. Three sewage plants set up and maintained by MAHE treat the waste water generated in the campus. These have a combined capacity to treat 5,500 cubic meters per day. Treated water from these plants are fully utilized for gardening and arboriculture. In addition a sullage treatment plant of 200 cubic meters per day capacity, treats grey water from the treatment plant which is re-circulated to the flush system in few hostel blocks.
We harvest rainwater in two ways:
Rainwater collected from roof tops connected to existing down-takes leading to a common header flows through a filter. The filtered water is then led to a nearby sump and then piped for domestic use. Chlorination is done, as required. This scheme adopted covers a catchment area of 27, 250 square meters. For recharging dry bore wells, a pit is excavated around the bore well and a filter medium is filled into the pit. Storm water drains and roof top rainwater pipes are diverted into this pit. The water gets filtered and recharges the bore well. This has been adopted in 11 locations around the campus leading to increase in water table and self-sufficiency during water stressed periods.
Air quality monitoring
The air we breathe in the campus is clear and that is the way we like it. This is how we do it,
we ensure the emissions from diesel generators are further tested in-house at regular intervals to ensure conformity to environmental limits.
To control vehicle emissions on our campus, we have a government-recognized Emission Testing Centre. Its services are offered at subsidized rates, so that self-compliance to vehicle emission norms is not an expensive rule to comply with.
Trees and shrubs are the ‘environmental lungs’ of the campus. These lungs soak up harmful carbon dioxide and convert it to oxygen. We try to develop all available open spaces through arboriculture and greenery.
Energy conservation is an ever-present theme in the planning and developing of all our campus facilities. We are also increasing our energy procurement mix with an increase in renewable sources like solar energy.
A few of the measures taken by us to make the Manipal campus energy efficient:
Solar Water heaters
Manipal, on coastal Karnataka, has an abundance of sunny day’s right through the year, except during the monsoons. Thus solar powered heaters are exclusively used for our heating requirements. Currently, the total installed capacity of solar heaters is four lakh liters per day thus reducing conventional energy use for heating.
Roof top Solar PV systems
Manipal Academy of Higher Education has recognized this aspect as an important facet of its operation and has adopted an energy policy supplementing the existing environment policy. In line with this, MAHE has partially shifted from conventional energy use to renewable energy use and sourcing. This is being achieved by installing solar PV rooftop systems on four buildings in the first phase with a capacity of 525 kilowatts peak (kWp) in September 2015 under BOOT principle connected to grid for self-use. These rooftop systems are however limited by the availability of shadow free area on existing buildings as ascertained in the initial survey conducted during proposal stage. This, in addition to already occupied roof tops for solar water heating systems leaves us with a comparatively smaller area that could be retrofitted with roof top PV systems. Recognizing this, to further boost MAHEs energy mix, green power procurement was put in place in August 2015. This substantially reduces MAHEs dependence on conventional energy sources thus mitigating carbon emissions as well as a shift towards sustainable energy use. Adoption of the above initiatives has led to 30% of the University’s power consumption being generated from a renewable source in FY 2015-16.
Awards and Recognitions
Our ongoing efforts have been recognized by the following awards. This recognition helps us to benchmark ourselves against global environmental standards.
@ Under suburban category in the UI Green Metric World University Ranking of respective years.