UWinnipeg continues to excel in Kyoto commitments

UWSA Bike Lab - promote active and sustainable transit options for all

UWSA Bike Lab – promote active and sustainable transit options for all

WINNIPEG, MB – The University of Winnipeg has met and surpassed its 2012 Kyoto Protocol commitment to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emission to 6% below 1990 levels.  Significantly, the University has reduced its emissions by approximately 25% since 1990 and 37% since 2011, within the context of notable campus expansion. UWinnipeg remains committed to reporting GHG emissions in absolute terms and is not adjusting its baseline year to accommodate for new campus growth.

“This remarkable success is due to the dedication, creativity and drive present in our university community,”” expressed Dr. Lloyd Axworthy, President and Vice-Chancellor, UWinnipeg. “This commitment to sustainability has grown exponentially each year. I want to thank everyone who has been a part of this achievement, in particular the students, staff, faculty, administration, Campus Sustainability Office and our Renewal Corporation, who have provided the inspiration and leadership that have allowed us to meet our goals.”

These reductions are particularly meaningful as the University has recently added 36% more space to its campus.  The deep reductions achieved to date mean the University expects to achieve its 2016 GHG reduction target of a 10% reduction below 1990 levels in the next couple of years – even with the addition of The UNITED Health and RecPlex and a new student residence to be located behind the Buhler Centre.

Smart green buildings mean reduced emissions and operating costs
UWinnipeg is incorporating the latest building automation technology across campus to reduce energy consumption.  Strategies to limit energy use include indoor air quality sensors to adjust ventilation levels, occupancy sensors and event scheduling to turn mechanical and lighting systems on only when needed. By constantly monitoring all systems on campus that keep occupants comfortable, UWinnipeg can identify inefficiencies and energy waste, helping to lower operating costs and to reduce emissions output.

Creating new structures for governance and accountability are key
UWinnipeg was the first major post-secondary institution in Manitoba to implement a systematic greenhouse gas reduction strategy. UWinnipeg’s Board of Regents made the Kyoto commitment in March 2005. Since then, the University set out to measure and report GHG emissions from buildings and fleet vehicles.

Richardson College for the Environment + Science Complex - One of the many new buildings built to LEED Silver standards or better

Richardson College for the Environment + Science Complex – One of the many new buildings built to LEED Silver standards or better

UWinnipeg has also made significant strides in incorporating sustainability into its governance structures. The University created a Vice-President (Human Resources, Audit & Sustainability) position and a Director of Campus Sustainability position to provide leadership and support for ongoing improvements in sustainability governance. Initiatives to reduce GHG emissions are also supported by a Campus Sustainability Council and the University’s senior executive, faculty and staff. The University also supports research, education and policy projects related to climate change through the Richardson College for the Environment, as well as other academic departments.

Partnerships Matter
UWinnipeg’s achievements in GHG reductions adds to UWinnipeg’s growing reputation as a sustainability leader, and were made possible by support from Manitoba’s Council on Post-Secondary Education (COPSE), Manitoba’s Climate Investment Pilot Program, Manitoba Hydro, the federal government as well as many private sector donors.

The University of Winnipeg is grateful to the public and private supporters, funders and donors who have assisted the institution in achieving its GHG reduction goals, and who have contributed to lessening the University’s impact on the environment.

For more information please check out Eco-friendly initiatives on UWinnipeg campus.

 Eco-friendly initiatives on UWinnipeg campus


Naniece Ibrahim, Communications Officer, The University of Winnipeg

P: 204.988.7130, E: n.ibrahim@uwinnipeg.ca


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