Hi! I’m Ester, your new Environment Officer for the SU. I think most of us can agree that the climate crisis we’re facing is scary, and to make a meaningful impact seems like an unachievable and overwhelming task. In this role, I will do my very best to improve the sustainability of the college, helping us achieve Carbon Net Zero for the SU’s and College’s targets, and running activities and initiatives for students to lower our environmental impact. I truly believe making a positive change is not as hard as we think, and I’m so looking forward to working with everyone to share this passion of mine.
RVCSU is Going Green!
RVCSU has signed the Global Climate Letter and committed to becoming net-zero in scopes 1 and 2 by 2030! We’ll also aim to reduce our emissions by 50% by 2025 and 80% by 2027.
What does this mean?
To become “net-zero”, an organisation must balance its greenhouse gas emissions with the removal of an equal proportion of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. This is known as “carbon offsetting”.
Becoming net-zero is a key step to working towards a sustainable future. It is vital that we work together to reduce our emissions as within just a decade, climate change will no longer be reversible.
Image description: The Three Scopes of Direct and Indirect Emissions
Image Source: Bahtia and Ranganathan, 2004
Click here for more information.
How can we become net-zero?
There are three steps to becoming net-zero:
1. Identify the source of our carbon emissions and work out our carbon footprint
2. Identify actions that will offset all emissions and quantify these
3. Commit to further reducing our carbon footprint
What are we doing to achieve our net-zero target?
Our new environmental policy is being published this term to set out how we will remain sustainable and to hold us to account. Our Environment Officer is also in the process of writing a five-year SMART action plan to set out exactly how we’ll achieve our goals, as well as mapping our carbon footprint.
These documents will be published here once they are complete, so watch this space!
How can you get involved?
If you have a keen interest in sustainability and would like to be involved, our Student Climate Change Committee (RVCSCCC) meets every couple of months to discuss sustainability at the RVC! Everyone is welcome to come to the meetings, whether you’d like to be actively involved in the committee, or just want to know more about what’s going on behind the scenes.
Key topics discussed by the committee this year include:
· Our new environmental policy
· Creating "student sustainability ambassadors"
· Recycling at the College and within RVC halls
· Sustainability webinars
· Social media campaigns
· Student sustainability challenges
· Becoming part of “Hedgehog Friendly Campus”
Information about when these meetings are held and how to join will be in the email SUpdates and on the RVCSU Facebook page! Feel free to email our Environment Officer, Olivia, with any questions at email@example.com.
Next meeting: TBC