Green Metric Rankings 2018: UdeS Remains Number 1 in Canada for Sustainable Development Achievements
Sherbrooke, le 10 janvier 2019 – The UdeS came 22nd in the world among 719 universities from 81 countries that took part in the UI GreenMetric World University Rankings 2018, which keeps it in the number 1 position among Canadian universities in terms of sustainable development.
The UdeS attained 7750 points out of a possible 10 000 thanks to a remarkable performance across all analyzed sectors. For UdeS vice-president of administration and sustainable development, Prof. Denyse Rémillard, “This achievement is the result of a strong sustainable development culture that has been ingrained in our institution for many years and it is reflective of the exceptional involvement of university community members.”
First in energy and climate change management
The most impressive performance of the UdeS is in the area of energy and climate change management, taking 1st place in Canada and 12th in the world. The UdeS received a perfect score for 5 of the 8 criteria analyzed. Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from buildings decreased by 29.2% in 2017-2018 in comparison to 1990-1991 (reference year from the Kyoto Protocol), despite a 63.7% increase in student population and a 117.6% increase in surface area. The university also reduced the energy intensity (GJ/m2) of its three campus facilities by 40.6% in 2017-2018 in comparison to 2002-2003.
This first-place ranking in energy and climate change management is likely to continue to be attained in the coming years with the university’s new solar park and the multiple initiatives deployed as a part of the Stratégie de gestion de l’énergie et des GES 2018-2022 (2018-2022 strategy for energy and greenhouse gas management) introduced last fall. Through this new strategy, the UdeS is reiterating its commitment to achieving carbon neutrality by 2030 and its intention to pave the way to get there.
Outstanding residual material, transportation, and water management
Residual material management was also ranked highly with a score of 83.3%, resulting from all of the initiatives implemented over the last decade to improve the university's performance in this area. Thanks to the collaborative efforts of the university community and over 20 university reuse, recycling, and recovery programs, 819 metric tons of residual materials were recovered from the three campuses in 2017, representing more than 72% of the residual materials produced.
The UdeS is also recognized for its transportation management, thanks in part to free public transit access for its Sherbrooke campus students. With a new public transit incentive program for its staff, continuing efforts in electric transportation, and all of the initiatives in the context of its Stratégie de mobilité durable 2018-2022 (2018-2022 sustainable mobility strategy), the university should do even better in the coming years.
Several measures taken in the last few years have allowed the UdeS to rank among the best in the world in terms of water management. Among other efforts, the university has reduced consumption of potable water in bottles by 72.1% since 2000 by removing single-use bottles from its campuses and upgrading its fountains and water stations. Finally, recovering and sanitizing rainwater has been made possible thanks to several installations that act as a natural filter on the Cœur campus and at the Agora on the main campus.
Sustainable development at the core of all activities
As regards the “education” component, the UdeS has once again ranked among the top universities with several specialized training programs in sustainable development and the environment, and over 300 educational activities offered in the same areas across the eight faculties and two university centres.
Among the top universities in green campus development, the UdeS has implemented several institutional projects and university community initiatives over the last few years. In fall 2018, the UdeS deployed its Stratégie d’aménagement des espaces verts 2018-2022 (2018-2022 green space development strategy), which emphasizes the importance of green spaces on the three UdeS campuses by incorporating green space development in its planning policies.
“With its 2018-2022 strategy plan, the Université de Sherbrooke has established a promising vision that places sustainable development at the core of its teaching and research activities and its community services. Rankings like GreenMetric’s provide an overview of progress and demonstrate real environmental gains that can be seen daily in all of our activities,” explained the Rector of the Université de Sherbrooke, Prof. Pierre Cossette.
The UI GreenMetric World University Rankings
Published for the ninth time in December 2018, UI GreenMetric World University Rankings compares initiatives from universities that foster sustainable development of their campuses as well as their management of environmental challenges. It is based on 39 performance indicators covering campus development and infrastructure, energy and climate change, residual materials, water management, transportation, and education.
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Isabelle Huard, Media Relations Officer
Communications Services | Université de Sherbrooke
819-821-8000, ext. 63395 |medias@USherbrooke.ca