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The University of Cologne switches to green electricity and will determine its CO2 footprint

In June 2020, the Senate of the University of Cologne followed the joint recommendation of the students and the administration to switch completely to electricity from renewable energies (‘green electricity’) at the earliest possible date. The new contract came into effect on 1 January 2022. The University of Cologne is thus taking a further step towards climate neutrality. ‘The additional costs caused by switching to renewable energy sources appear to be bearable, and we can achieve a significant reduction in CO2 emissions as a result,’ said Dr Michael Stückradt, former Chancellor of the University of Cologne.

Additionally, the Senate also voted in favour of determining the University’s so-called CO2 footprint in an annual balance sheet in the future and reducing it further. The calculation of the CO2 footprint is based on the Greenhouse Gas Emissions Protocol (GHG). According to the GHG protocol, the University of Cologne will integrate the following aspects: (1) boilers, vehicle fleet, and process emissions, and (2) electricity, heat, and district heating.

In 2019, around 500,000m2 of space at the University of Cologne (excluding University Hospital Cologne) was powered, consuming more than 100,000,000 kWh.