skip to content

Sustainability in organization & operations

A consistent commitment to sustainability in the University's central fields of action and performance dimensions also means that we have to reflect our own organization, operations and campus development. The UoC has already launched several initiatives that will be strongly promoted in the coming years. We already consistently raise awareness of socially and environmentally sustainable consumption, for example through the Fairtrade University initiative since 2018, and continue to strengthen efforts to minimize greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The latter were initiated as a result of the student parliament's initiative (2019) and have led to a dialogue on climate-friendly mobility with the City of Cologne (2020) as well as the quantification of our emissions (2021) and the switch to green electricity (2022). A first CO2 balance sheet (2018-2020) was prepared, which will regularly record all relevant contributions of the UoC in the future. Initial pilot projects on photovoltaics were initiated on the basis of a feasibility study for the new construction of a zoological research station and on the Student Service Centre (2023) and shall be extended to a large number of roof surfaces at the University.

Climate neutrality as a goal of UoC property management

The UoC has set itself the goal of becoming climate-neutral with its operations and its properties, and underpins this goal with a roadmap "Sustainable Campus Operations".

The following measures are intended to promote sustainability, reduce GHG emissions and replace fossil fuels with renewable resources:

  1. to minimize GHG emissions, an energy management system is developed for buildings, and building operation and construction are aligned with ecological standards;
  2. the efficient use of space is to be increased through subject-specific parameters and the exploitation of potential in teaching (e.g. optimization of lecture hall utilization), research (e.g. large-scale equipment concept) and operations (e.g. flexible workplaces);
  3. standards for eco-socially and economically sustainable procurement will be introduced;
  4. appropriate regulations shall be introduced to reduce business travel by air and the University's vehicle fleet is to be increasingly converted to electric mobility;
  5. in order to replace fossil energy sources, the solar potential of the University's surfaces will be exploited to the maximum, additional green facades will be used for cooling and green spaces will be expanded.