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Workshop: “Universities on the Way to Climate Neutrality”

More and more universities commit themselves to act on climate change. Cities and universities around the world have started to declare a state of climate emergency, making climate protection a priority in their own institutions. This development has triggered strong sustainability commitments and new activities on campus, based on a new understanding of the urgency of the climate crisis. Freie Universität Berlin was the first university in Germany to declare a state of climate emergency in December 2019 – pledging to become CO2 neutral by 2025. This decision highlights the universities’ commitment to systematically embedding sustainability and climate protection in their institutions and international networks.

In our workshop, universities that have declared an emergency, such as Freie Universität Berlin and the University of British Columbia, will introduce their strategic plans for the climate emergency. Speakers will address the following questions:

- What factors or developments led to the decision to declare a climate emergency or issue a strong sustainability commitment?

- What does a climate-neutral strategy at universities look like? What are the major milestones in achieving climate neutrality?

- Beyond reducing CO2 and greenhouse gas emissions, how can climate protection and sustainability be implemented in the whole institution?

The workshop was organized in the framework of the University Alliance for Sustainability and open for interested universities. For further information on the workshop please contact Katrin.Schweigel@fu-berlin.de.

Keynotes by:

Welcome Note by Andreas Wanke

"UBC Climate Action Leadership" by John Madden

"Universities on the way to Carbon Neutrality - University of Bristol" by Martin Wiles, Head of Sustainability