Glasgow Green sets out a climate change strategy and action plan for the University of Glasgow. It follows the Principal’s declaration of a climate emergency in May 2019 – a statement which was reported worldwide – and which reinforced similar messages from the UK Parliament and the Scottish Government as well as other universities around the globe.

Glasgow Green outlines the context in which we are operating, reviews progress to date in reducing carbon emissions and sets out a route to ‘net-zero’ carbon emissions by 2030. In the final section, we identify a series of practical actions under five headings:

  • Engaging and Empowering Our Community
  • Promoting Efficiency
  • Governance and Policy
  • Continuous Improvement Initiatives
  • Building Resilience through Partnerships

Engaging the University community more effectively is central to this strategy. We believe there are huge opportunities – people at all levels are treating the issue of climate change with a heightened sense of urgency and are willing the University to act. A second theme relates to the University’s place in the world – rather than being inward looking, we want to use our influence and expertise to address key challenges and inspire others to action.

At the same time, we need a strategy that is affordable and achievable – one which allows the University not only to fulfil its primary objectives, but to make sustainability an essential element in those objectives.

The strategy draws on discussions at Senior Management Group, Senate and the Student Experience Committee, consultation seminars with staff and students, and a wider survey. These discussions demonstrated that all sections of the University community agree that we need to go further and faster in addressing the climate emergency; there is also a consensus that we should monitor the impact of our actions and make our data public in an open and transparent manner.