Green Guide for Universities

IARU - The International Alliance of Research Universities

The new guide makes it easier for universities around the world to go green

Sustainia and IARU, ten of the world’s top universities, present tangible sustainability actions for university campuses. This new study which gives ideas for tangible action on campuses by sharing best practices from sustainability initiatives from Yale, Cambridge, Peking and Copenhagen University.

Building on hands-on experience, the guide provides suggestions for how to start, tools and guidance for building maintenance, green purchasing, transportation, and employee and student involvement across campus and between departments.

These examples showcase successful environmental, financial, and social interventions from the US, Europe, Singapore, China, Japan and Australia.

“Universities have the opportunity to create cultures of sustainability for today’s students and tomorrow’s leaders, and to set their expectations for how the world should be. The Green Guide provides real-world examples to inspire innovative and creative action at universities around the globe.”

Yale University

At Yale University, one of the initiatives deployed is sustainability training for the core purchasing staff.

Peking University

At Peking University, biking and walking are encouraged by placing car parking outside the campus area.

University of Oxford

At University of Oxford, sustainable building policies are suggesting new standards for buildings and design processes on campus. A business travel toolkit gives advices for the most appropriate travel means for staff.

University of Copenhagen

At University of Copenhagen, a Green Campus Office was established in 2008 to develop policies and action plans for energy efficiency. This led to a goal of 20 percent reductions of CO2-emmisions.

University of Cambridge

At University of Cambridge, the Gurdon Institute embarked on an awareness campaign with posters on energy saving facts, inter-lab competition with money prizes and a visualization tool to make staff aware of energy use.

UC Berkeley

At University of California Berkeley, the Energy Management Initiative ended the procedure of energy use as a free commodity for campus units. Instead, departments now get financial savings back if they use less energy than estimated.

ETH Zurich

At ETH Zurich, Triple Bottom Line principals must be addressed during planning, construction and operation of a building according to a Life Cycle Costs method developed to secure a sustainable and holistic approach to construction and maintenance.

National University of Singapore

At the National University of Singapore: Students have initiated change through monetary incentives such as plastic bag tax and a rebate for individuals who use reusable lunch boxes and water bottles.

Australian National University

At Australian National University, the Fenner School of Environment and Society, was designed and built to achieve a six star Green Star rating in both ‘design’ and ‘as built’. To achieve the impressive zero net kg production of CO2 per annum, a range of energy and water saving initiatives were incorporated into its design.

The University of Tokyo

At University of Tokyo, a sustainable campus fund provides a subsidy to give each graduate school and institute incentive to invest in energy-conserving opportunities.

“We are very excited to see top universities unite to promote sustainability initiatives and goals, and hereby highlight the change that the education sector can drive. Universities have the capacity to test systems and technologies, and to advance innovative solutions in ways that companies and municipalities cannot.”