All Go for Action on Climate Change

Thursday 4 February 2021

A staggering 98% of people who responded to the consultations on the University’s Environmental Strategy agreed that they were concerned about climate change, and 93% were positive to the vision that the University become ‘net zero by 2035’.

‘The Environmental Sustainability Board takes this wholehearted endorsement of our work from the University community on board, and will move forward confidently so that St Andrews plays its fullest role in addressing the climate crisis,’ commented Professor Sir Ian Boyd, Chair of the ESB.

Respondents are keen to see action and changes in day-to-day experiences at St Andrews. Frustration was expressed at drafty buildings, as well as approaches to the maintenance of our grounds that do not promote biodiversity. People also felt disheartened by food and drink offers that were not sustainable. A specific feature of feedback was interest in initiatives that support ‘greener labs’, and planning work is underway in the ESB to address all these concerns.

A further theme was that data on the University’s carbon footprint be provided at the level of the School or Unit as well as institution. People wanted a full picture of our carbon footprint to understand how different activities impact it, as well as whether real reductions  are being made.

‘I was glad to see respondents asking for access to the data that will empower them to take sustainable decisions at work’ added Sir Ian, ‘Reaching net zero needs actions across the University at many scales. And timely, increasingly rich data on sustainability will enable us to share the progress we are making’.

 The University’s Net Zero 2035 Environmental Sustainability strategy was approved by court 29th January 2021.

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