UiO is actually getting greener

Maryam Faghihimani, rådgiver i Grønt UiO, kommenterer forrige ukes nyhetskommentar, og kan fortelle at UiO faktisk blir bare grønnere og grønnere.


After scoring as low as 20 out of 50 in 2010, Universitetet i Oslo (UiO) has improved its environmental sustainability status to 35 in 2012. But there is still plenty of room for improvement, as suggested in [Universitas’ comment last week.](1)

Grønt UiO has launched a project to encourage avoiding unnecessary air travels. Certainly attending scientific conferences, training programs and meetings which require dynamic and interactive discussions with other members are necessary. But delivering a lecture, supervising a student or attending small size meetings can be easily replaced by a high quality video conferencing session without sacrificing communication quality. In this project, two students have provided a guide book and courses to facilitate use of video-conference systems for UiO staff.

After surveying transport habits of UiO staff and students, a campaign will be launched on 14th of November to promote biking to work even in winter time. During the campaign arranged by some of our students, professionals will teach repairing bikes as well as giving safety advice for winter biking. Reducing number of car travels to the campus is another way for reducing CO2 emission. Since Oslo has a reasonably good public transportation system, with some adjustments in bicycle facilities on and around the campus, we can have greener transport habits among UiO population.

UiO has a plan to implement the Follow-Me printing system. With this system the extra cover page for each printing will be dropped. It can also reduce the number of forgotten print out. Grønn IT, a week long program, was organized by Grønt UiO last October in which 15 participants from eight countries attended to exchange green IT practices.

UiO has a grand ambition of becoming the European example of a sustainable university. In the same time Grønt UiO office was informed to end its activities by the end of 2013. There will be efforts related to energy and greener operation at UiO, however it is unclear until today how UiO will play its role in engaging and supporting students in sustainability projects, community outreach and collaborating with sustainability networks and societal actors in the future. The initial result of an on-going study by Grønt UiO show that the majority of students in the capitals of Europe responding to the questionnaire prefers greener universities. UiO should make this wish come true.

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