With research and education as its core business and a broad social responsibility, it is only logical that this has an impact on business operations and the management of the campus. Here, too, the potential role of a university as an agent of change emerges. The University not only manages its own buildings, but is also responsible for the entire Utrecht Science Park, where approximately 27,000 people work.
Utrecht University has increasingly sustainable operations. This is because the university is focusing on making the following aspects more sustainable. The Corporate Sustainability Plan (pdf) of the Real Estate and Campus Directorates, the Facility Service Centre, ITS and HR contains 11 themes to achieve a sustainable campus and sustainable business operations. What Utrecht University is doing for each theme is explained below. You can read more about each topic below.
We separate waste in our university buildings. The better we do this, the more waste we can reuse or recycle, and the less (residual) waste we have to incinerate. We use special waste bins with separate waste streams for paper, fruit, vegetable and food waste, plastic and beverage cartons and residual waste.
Utrecht University works on making her catering more sustainable. Wishes and demands for sustainability are included in the contracts for catering. The coffee that is drunk at Utrecht University is made of 100% sustainable, certified coffee beans and we have no disposable water bottles in the vending machines in the university buildings.
The university want to make less and more sustainable travel the norm, offering safe and high-quality digital education and facilitating the possibility of remote collaboration. The sustainable travel campaign 'Right on track' gives employees tools to travel less, more sustainably and more efficiently. On uu.nl/rightontrack employees can find information about the travel policy, inspiring travel stories from colleagues and answers to frequently asked questions.
Utrecht University wants to be CO2 neutral in 2030. Therefore we invest in construction and renovation projects to make buildings future proof; healthy, circular and energy generating. The University uses solar panels, solar meadows and solar carports, and purchases 100 % green energy that is generated by windmills in the Netherlands.
The university aims for 100% circular procurement by 2030. Circular furniture is the default. The university will only purchase second-hand furniture or new circular furniture. We are also a member of FIRA (Firmus Agnitio). This platform supports buyers and suppliers in making their value chains more sustainable.
Efficient use of water is a focal point in the sustainability ambitions of Utrecht University. For instance, the taps in the Administration Building are equipped with sensors and the toilets are water-saving.