Environmental objectives

Last changed: 27 September 2021

SLU has the vision to be a climate-neutral university by 2027. To achieve this, six focus areas have been identified. SLU has also adopted university-wide environmental objectives in the fields of energy use, business travel, procurement, education and environmental monitoring and assessment.

Here, you can read more about our environmental objectives and the most recent follow-up. Some of the objectives are followed up every six months, others once a year.

Energy use

Objective: 1.4

By 2027, 50% of electricity consumed and 95% of energy used for heating is to come from renewable sources, primarily solar. This applies to all properties managed by SLU.

Annual follow-up: The target was introduced in January 2021, meaning follow-up is not yet possible.

Objective: 1.5

By 2027, SLU will have streamlined all energy use (electricity, heating, cooling) by at least 8% per rented m2, compared to 2019. This is the equivalent of energy streamlining of at least 1% per rented m2 per year, and will not have any detrimental impact on SLU’s operations and tenants.

Annual follow-up: The target was introduced in January 2021, meaning follow-up is not yet possible.

Objective: 1.6

By 2027, SLU and Akademiska hus will save a minimum 15% of energy in the properties SLU rents, based on usage information from 2019. The target includes electricity, heating and cooling and is calculated at kWh per rented m2 and will not have any detrimental impact on SLU’s operations and tenants.

Annual follow-up: The target was introduced in January 2021, meaning follow-up is not yet possible.

Business travel

Objective: 2.6

By 2025, SLU will have reduced its total fossil fuel emissions from air travel by 60%, compared to 2019 per full-time equivalent. This could be the equivalent of a 90% reduction in domestic flights and 50% reduction in international flights.

Bi-annual follow-up: SLU has reduced fossil emissions from travel by 97 per cent per full-time equivalent (FTE) compared to the first semester of 2019. Emissions from domestic air travel have dropped by 95 per cent and from international flights by 98 per cent per FTE. This huge reduction is primarily due to the restrictions imposed during the coronavirus pandemic.

Procurement

Objective 3.6

Follow-up of at least three procurement annually to determine if, and to what extent, the environmental impact has been reduced.

Bi-annual follow-up: At the end of the first semester of 2021, three follow-ups had been done: window cleaning in Uppsala, medical consumables and species-specific medical consumables for animal healthcare as well as fuel for the research vessel Svea.

Suppliers have submitted proof that requirements have been fulfilled, such as the requirement to use environmentally friendly detergents for window cleaning and approved materials for packaging of consumables. For Svea, a number of fuel invoices were checked.

For medical consumables, proof of audit and revision by a third party of the suppliers’ environmental work is missing.

Objective 3.7

In cases where it is relevant from an environmental risk analysis perspective, environmental requirements must be listed in all procurements.

Bi-annual follow-up: An environmental risk assessment has been performed for all procurements that resulted in a signed agreement by the end of the first semester of 2021. In 11 of these procurements (technical consultancy services for agricultural operations and labs; plant protection products, plant nutrients and seeds; third-party certification; tractor Lanna; work clothes; printing services; consumables and services for agricultural operations; servers, storage and networks; lake sampling with helicopter; promotional items for SLU and interim agreements on hay harvest), the risk assessment resulted in environmental requirements and the green leaf indicator being used in Proceedo where possible.

Objective 3.8

Increase the number of call-offs with environmental consideration for focus areas with fixed terms. For 2020-2022, the focus area is domestic hotel nights.

Bi-annual follow-up: Of the 20 most frequently booked hotels in 2021, 28 per cent of hotel nights were booked at a hotel with an environmental certificate. This is a reduction compared to 2020 when almost half of the hotel nights were at environmentally certified hotels.

Education

Objective 4.4

To prepare them for the labour market, all SLU graduates should be given a solid base for managing all aspects of sustainability - economic, social and environmental. To achieve this, intermediate objectives have been defined.

Annual follow-up: See follow-up for interim targets.

Interim target: 4.4.1

Integrate sustainable development to all programmes (100%) by 2025.

Annual follow-up: The target was introduced in January 2021, meaning follow-up is not yet possible.

Interim target: 4.4.2

By 2025, course evaluation reports should score an average of at least 3.5 (of a possible 5.0) in response to questions regarding the extent to which sustainability has been integrated into education.

Annual follow-up: The target was introduced in January 2021, meaning follow-up is not yet possible.

Interim target: 4.4.5

At least 70% of alumni asked will agree that their programme has given them the tools to work with all three aspects of sustainable development in their current professional life, and that they feel they use these tools and contribute to a more sustainable world.

Annual follow-up: The target was introduced in January 2021, meaning follow-up is not yet possible.

Environmental monitoring and assessment

Objective: 5.4

To further SLU’s contributions to society’s environmental work, one of the university’s general environmental objectives is to increase the use of data generated from SLU’s environmental monitoring and assessment amongst national decision-makers, public authorities, researchers and the general public.

By the end of 2025, at least 90% of participants* in SLU’s quality enhancement activities are expected to openly publish their data, as outlined in the environmental data management quality guide**.

Bi-annual follow-up: This objective began to apply in January 2021. Of all the operations that took part in the quality work, 5 per cent met the requirements by the end of the first semester of 2021. It should be possible to reach this objective by implementing the adopted action plan.

A climate-neutral university

Vision 6

SLU has the vision to be a climate-neutral university by 2027. To achieve this, the following six focus areas have been defined.

Focus area 6.1

All electricity purchased or consumed by SLU to come from fossil-free sources.

Annual follow-up: Only fossil-free electricity is purchased in 2020.

Focus area 6.2

All district heating/cooling purchased or consumed by SLU to come from fossil-free sources.

Annual follow-up: Of the heating/cooling purchased in 2020, 63 % was fossil-free.

Focus area 6.3

All SLU-owned vehicles, machinery and tools to run on fossil-free fuel.

Annual follow-up: The distribution in 2020: electricity 5 %, hybrid 4 %, methane gas 1 %, diesel 71 % and petrol 20 %. Of the total diesel consumption, at least 37 % was fossil-free. Ultuna property is responsible for a significant part of the consumption of fossil-free diesel. NOTE! The result does not include SLU's research vessel Svea, as it is not classified as a vehicle. The vessel is powered solely by fossil-free diesel (HVO100).

Focus area 6.4

Procurement of goods and services to be clearly characterised by climate awareness.

Annual follow-up: Largely satisfactory results by the end of 2020. When relevant, energy consumption must be acknowledged as much as possible for procurement of products, services and buildings. The number of procurements with environmental requirements are affected by the type of procurement in question. SLU operations are broad, and it is not unusual that very specific products are procured. In most cases, there is only one supplier, which affects environmental requirement.

Focus area 6.5

Emissions from business travel to be reduced according to the existing action plan and objectives.

Annual follow-up: See the follow-up of the business travel objective.

Focus area 6.6

Climate compensation.

Annual follow-up: In 2020, a project was started to investigate what SLU can do in practice to bind carbon dioxide, e.g. by producing and disposing of biochar.

Facts:

Status indicators

 The objective can be fulfilled within the given timeframe.

 The objective can be fulfilled within the given timeframe if appropriate action is taken.

 The objective cannot be fulfilled within the given timeframe.

Follow up of previous environmental objectives.