Queen's large and unique pool of talented researchers, students, and staff are engaged in a diverse set of sustainability-related activities. What follows are only some of the major environmentally-minded initiatives spearheaded by various groups in the Queen's community.
Queen's Sustainability Office
Queen's Sustainability Office advances the university's green initiatives, identifies and implements new opportunities for working closely with the Queen's community on such initiatives, and creates a greater degree of awareness about environmental issues within the University.
Sustainability Strategic Framework
Queen's Sustainability Strategic Framework acts as a campus sustainability roadmap. The framework establishes guiding principles and fosters a common understanding of sustainability at Queen's.
Climate Action Plan
In 2010, Principal Woolf signed the University and College Presidents' Climate Change Statement of Action for Canada. This pledge commits the university to engaging in several activities aimed at reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and enhancing research and curriculum in the areas of climate change and sustainability. It also requires developing a comprehensive Climate Action Plan (CAP).
Since January 2012, Queen's has been working in partnership with the consulting firm Delphi Group to develop a CAP for Queen's. Our CAP will include a summary of the current campus greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory; GHG emission projections; operations climate action goals and strategies to reduce emissions; and mechanisms to track progress on goals and actions.
A 22-member internal advisory committee has also been established to collaboratively work on the evaluation, planning, development, and implementation of the plan.
Queen's students are responsible for many of the environmental projects and practices on campus and around the world, such as:
Vermicomposting: This student-run initiative uses red wiggler worms to decompose organic matter in Queen's residences. It is one of many sustainability initiatives of the Main Campus Residents' Council.
Earth Centre: The Earth Centre offers students, faculty, and community members an opportunity to transform their environmental concern into positive action through green consumerism and innovative discussion.
Queen's Project on International Development (QPID): A student-run organization — operating out of the Queen's Engineering Society since 1990 — that hosts a variety of initiatives on campus, in Kingston, in Canada, and internationally, including community development projects in Guyana, Ghana, Nunavut, Bolivia, Peru, India, and Nicaragua.
The Tea Room: In December 2011, staff at the Tea Room celebrated a major milestone: the café is now 100 per cent consumer-waste free, meaning all of the products customers use can be recycled or composted.
Located in Beamish-Munro Hall, Queen's Live Building is a living lab, where the Integrated Learning Centre's mechanical, electrical, and structural systems are monitored in real-time and left open to view, to show how sustainable practices can be incorporated into building design. It also supports a weather station!
For information on how Queen's manages issues around air quality, water use, lighting and energy consumption, waste diversion, and new construction go to the Sustainability Office website...