Journal of Cleaner Production 10 (2002) 3–12 www.cleanerproduction.net Papers from 1999 Environmental Management Conference—“Sustainable Education” An environmental management model for universities: from environmental guidelines to staff involvement Peter Viebahn * University of Osnabrück, Institute of Environmental Systems Research, 49069 Osnabrück, Germany Received 26 May 2000; accepted 9 April 2001 Abstract The environmental pollution caused by universities in the form of energy and material consumption could be considerably reduced by an effective choice of organisational and technical measures. Examples of environmental protection measures can be seen at several universities, but a professional environmental management system (EMS) for universities with a systematic approach to reduce the consumption of resources is lacking. At the University of Osnabrück, the basis for a university-related EMS has been developed for the first time in Germany, the use of which is also possible by other universities. Beginning in autumn 1999, this EMS will gradually be implemented at the University of Osnabrück. 2001 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved. Keywords: Ecobalance; Environmental management system; Material and energy flow analysis; Operational environmental protection; University 1. Introduction: necessity of environmental protection at universities 1.1. Environmental damage on par with commercial concerns A total of 2.36 million people (1.84 million students and 520 000 staff) learn, lecture, research and work at 334 different universities, colleges and polytechnics in Germany . With regard to their consumption of energy and materials, universities are therefore comparable to large commercial concerns. Environmental pollution not only occurs in lecture halls and research laboratories, but also in the area of administration. This pollution could be reduced considerably by the systematic implementation of organisational and technical measures. For example, a third of all energy consumed in public institutions could be saved with the introduction of such measures [2,3]. If the University of Osnabrück were to reduce its energy consumption by just 20% it could save 500 000 DM in energy costs every year. However, the necessity to become more involved in * Tel.: +49 541 969 2589; fax: +49 541 969 2599. E-mail address: [email protected] Viebahn). (P. environmental protection should not be guided by financial arguments alone: universities make a significant contribution to the development of our society, and therefore have a special societal responsibility, in particular with regard to the sustainable protection of the environment and the use of resources. University environmental protection projects can encourage other public institutions to act, thus making the universities role models. 1.2. Lack of control instruments On the commercial level, environmental aspects have already been taken into consideration in several concepts for ecological-oriented business planning [4–6]. The control instruments required to influence the ecological consumption of resources generally do not exist for the higher education sector. On the contrary, impediments to the implementation of environmental protection concepts abound. 앫 Firstly, there are no legal regulations for economising measures. To date, safety issues (e.g. toxic and hazardous waste) have dominated environmental protection measures at universities. Measures related to the ecological use of resources (e.g. saving energy and water, reducing traffic, environmentally friendly 0959-6526/01/$ - see front matter 2001 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved. PII: S 0 9 5 9 - 6 5 2 6 ( 0 1 ) 0 0 0 1 7 - 8 4 P. Viebahn / Journal of Cleaner Production 10 (2002) 3–12 methods of construction, nature protection) are carried out on a voluntary basis. 앫 Unlike hierarchically structured organisations in the market economy and other public institutions, universities still function in a “heterarchic” fashion, that is, with organisational structures in which the feeling of responsibility is often lacking. This is the reason why instruments that have been proven in the market economy could not be applied to the higher education sector, and resource-saving measures could not be implemented via central regulations. 앫 Whilst incentives exist in the market economy to encourage staff to use resources carefully, this is impossible in the higher education sector, which has an unconducive financial system, and where there is a lack of productivity orientation. forerunner role as an environmentally friendly university. It boasts the lowest consumption of electricity for universities in Lower Saxony, with regard to usable floor space, for example. The aim of the material and energy flow analysis was to show where the problems of pollution lie so that specific environmental protection measures can be taken. Besides technical improvements, measures in the non-investment areas in particular were to be elaborated, since the environmentally friendly behaviour of university members alone could achieve great savings. For this reason the following key areas were targeted for the planned environmental management system (EMS) at the University of Osnabrück: 1. Recording and modelling the material and energy flows of the University and developing an ecobalance. 2. Elaboration of instruments to reduce environmental pollution. 1.3. Resource-saving comprehensive concept required Despite these impediments, many German university administrations have managed to take measures to improve the environmental friendliness of their respective institutions (an overview of 1994 is given in ). More and more students, academic assistants and professors are becoming aware of the situation, and contribute to the work in the form of study groups, projects and research . However, there is a complete lack of a resource-saving comprehensive concept containing an agreed package of measures encompassing all areas related to the higher education sector, and which attempts to overcome the above-mentioned impediments. Conventional “administrative action” no longer suffices — professional environmental management is now required in the higher education sector. Using the example of University of Osnabrück, a model unique in Germany was elaborated containing the basis for such an environmental management concept. 2. Idea of the project The project “Material and energy flow analysis of a university — development of an environmental management system for universities using the example of the University of Osnabrück” (in the following ‘project’ for short) was elaborated in cooperation with the Institute of Environmental Systems Research, the Environmental Protection Working Group of the university and the university administration. The project was sponsored by the Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt (German Federal Environmental Foundation) from November 1995 to April 1998, and thereafter was financed by university funds. With its 12 500 students and 1250 members of staff, the University of Osnabrück already fulfils a certain At the same time, the EMS should be based on the EMAS 1 Directive of the European Union , which aims to achieve a continual and long-term improvement of environmental protection at work. 3. The “Osnabrück Environmental Management Model for Universities” as the project’s result 3.1. An overview of the model’s building blocks The result of the project is the “Osnabrück Environmental Management Model for Universities”. However, it was ensured that it could be applied to other institutions of higher education. For simplicity it was divided into ten ‘building blocks’ which can be carried out step by step. In most cases it suffices to adapt the building blocks shown in Fig. 1 to the structures of the university in question. The numbering of the building blocks is a recommendation of which order to carry out the steps when constructing an EMS for a university. However, it also depends on the university’s prerequisites and which areas have possibly already been dealt with in another context. Additional elements can of course also be integrated into the system. The external building blocks form the framework for the inner steps. This course is particularly recommended if the EMS is to be carried out according to the EMAS directive, since most of the building blocks then become obligatory. Procedure requirements should be developed for each building block in which the aims of the university are stated, who 1 EMAS=Environmental Management and Audit Scheme, EWG No. 1836/93, 29th June 1993. P. Viebahn / Journal of Cleaner Production 10 (2002) 3–12 5 tasks is supplemented by a central position in the university management: The Environmental Management Coordinator is responsible for bringing together and coordinating the individual environmental areas, answers any enquiries that may arise, collects ideas and carries out public relations work. At the University of Osnabrück environmental protection aspects were particularly taken into consideration in the areas of waste, dangerous substances and energy saving, thanks to the personal dedication of the staff involved. The described organisational idea was developed to implement professional environmental management, but has not yet been carried out. In addition to the Environmental Protection Working Group, which already existed before the elaboration of an EMS, a project group on waste avoidance was brought into being at the end of 1997 to prepare and accompany the implementation of a new waste concept. The following tasks still have to be carried out: 앫 nomination of the president as the top management representative; 앫 creation of a position for the Environmental Management Coordinator; and 앫 optimisation of the organisational structure within the university’s administrative departments. Fig. 1. Building blocks of “Osnabrück’s Environmental Management Model for Universities”. is responsible for which areas, and which tasks are then appointed to those responsible. In addition to the following description of each building block, their present implementation at the University of Osnabrück is also portrayed. 3.2. The individual building blocks 3.2.1. Building block EM 1: organisational structure In the building block ‘organisational structure’ it is decided how to set up and carry out environmental protection within the running of the university. A functionally-integrative organisational structure is recommended: instead of creating a separate department for environmental protection the environmental aspects are increasingly integrated into the existing task areas of the administration which have already been involved in environmental protection. The advantage of staff members becoming responsible for environmental protection in their own areas is that the responsibility does not lie with a small number of specialists. Furthermore, the specialist knowledge in the individual areas can then be utilised. The integration of environmental protection 3.2.2. Building block EM 2: environmental guidelines (internal) The environmental guidelines act as the basis for all environment-related activities at the university. They represent the university’s ‘environmental policy’ which determines the overall objectives and basic principles of environmental protection. The guidelines represent the voluntary commitment regarding protection of the environment, both for staff within the university and outside the university. The environmental guidelines of the University of Osnabrück were elaborated by the Environmental Protection Working Group from March 1996 to March 1997, and discussed at length within the administration, the faculties and by the university management. This guaranteed the inclusion of all university groups in the development of the guidelines. The senate unanimously adopted the guidelines on 16.4.1997, thus setting a precedence for a German university (cf. Appendix A). 3.2.3. Building block EM 3: external environmental regulations When constructing an EMS in accordance with EMAS, a procedure to register and internally publish all legal, administrative and environmental requirements needs to be developed and continued. This procedure is also recommended even if an ecoaudit is not intended. Although the fulfilment of legal requirements ought to 6 P. Viebahn / Journal of Cleaner Production 10 (2002) 3–12 be self-evident, examples exist in all universities to show that obligations are not being fulfilled . Examples at Osnabrück show that this can be a result of the university members’ lack of knowledge on the subject. In the environmental management project the various different regulations at federal, state and local level were first of all compiled. A procedure as demanded by the EMAS has not yet been submitted. 3.2.4. Building block EM 4: environmental audit (life cycle assessment) Building block 4 involves carrying out an environmental audit of the university in order to obtain an overview of its environmental relevance. With a list of all input and output materials and energy flows at the university it can be determined where extensive measures need to be implemented to reduce resource consumption. Simultaneously, the lists form the basis for an analysis of the effects the respective materials have on the environment. There are several different ways of carrying out an ecoaudit; in Osnabrück it was implemented by way of a life cycle assessment (LCA) based on ISO 14 040 . Following this an LCA includes the four steps: goal and scope definition, inventory analysis, impact assessment and interpretation )2. The relevant material and energy flows were modelled using the ecobalance software Umberto, an interactive tool developed by the Institute of Energy and Environmental Research (IFEU) in Heidelberg and the Institute of Environmental Computer Sciences (IFU) in Hamburg . The inventory analysis was first of all carried out for the University of Osnabrück, the objectives of which were as follows: 앫 The inventory analysis aims to give an overview of the (most important) material and energy flows concerning the university and its buildings. Only then are the specific measures taken in the individual buildings or environmental areas (top–down procedure). The advantage of the top–down as opposed to the bottom– up procedure, where individual buildings are first investigated in depth and the results are then adjusted to the whole university, is that the evaluator does not get bogged down with too much detail, thus forgetting the overall objective. 앫 Another objective was not just to consider the direct influence of the university, but also to include the 2 ISO 14 040 relates to LCAs for products as well as for services. The problem with LCAs for universities is to define the ‘product’ of the university and a corresponding ‘functional unit’, relate the material and energy flows to it and choose a better ‘product’ as a result of the impact assessment. However, a comparative assessment of different years and between different universities which uses the same impact assessment method is possible. material and energy flows that occur before and after their actual consumption. For electricity consumption, for example, this means the chain from the extraction of the raw material via the power stations to its delivery to the university. The aim of this is to include processes that hardly affect the direct running of the university, but the manufacture or disposal of which make a great environmental impact. The omission of these would falsify the comprehensive balance. The inventory analysis can therefore be split into two separate balances: the core and the complementary balances. According to the Swiss method “Ökobilanzen für Unternehmen” (Ecobalances for companies) the core balance includes those processes that occur in the company itself (e.g. energy supply or waste disposal). All other areas belong to the complementary balance (e.g. company commuter travel, sewage treatment) . 앫 Finally, special attention should be paid to the university’s CO2 emissions. With regard to the CO2 reduction target of the federal government (a 25% reduction by the year 2005 in relation to 1990) and the decision of the City of Osnabrück to reduce its CO2 emissions (a reduction of 50% by the year 2010 in relation to 1987), the University is also obliged to reduce its CO2 emissions. The aim was therefore to identify the CO2 emissions on the university scale, and for each separate building. Besides the first two objectives, which are the prerequisite for an exact audit of CO2 emissions, the (energy-related) emissions are to traced back to the individual buildings, so that a table of CO2 emitters can be drawn up. Moreover, it should be possible to compare CO2 emissions related to energy, traffic and (waste) water. Table 1 shows for which areas the life cycle inventory analysis has been carried out. Data from 1996 were generally used for the overall balance. The impact assessment phase of the LCA was carried out using a procedure proposed by the German Federal Environmental Agency (UBA) . It is the realisation of the method of impact categories described in ISO 14 040 and implemented in Umberto. The inventory data was assigned to ten different impact categories and modelled within these categories. Finally, the categories were weighted against each other. Table 2 shows the results of the impact assessment. The most significant results are that the University contributes ‘considerably’ towards both categories ‘Consumption of fossil energy resources’ and ‘Greenhouse effect’. The main causes of this are electricity and heat consumption as well as traffic. In order to improve its environmental situation the University was recommended to reduce its CO2 emissions, its consumption of fossil energy resources and its methane emissions. The implementation of these measures would in turn P. Viebahn / Journal of Cleaner Production 10 (2002) 3–12 7 Table 1 Parts of the life cycle inventory analysis with the period of timea Area Energy Traffic Water Waste water Materials Waste Area a Material and energy flows Period of time All consumption of heat and electricity in the individual buildings and their pre-processes, as well as the emissions caused by it. Energy consumption and emissions due to commuter traffic (staff and students) and internal traffic (business trips and vehicles), both directly and in the preprocesses. All water consumption in the individual buildings. Waste water from the University, as well as material and energy consumption involved in waste water disposal. Consideration of chemicals, the most important office items, use of paper and some sanitary materials. All occurring waste, such as hazardous waste, electronic waste, residual waste, paper, plastics and polystyrene. Consideration of the built on, sealed and natural areas. Modelling, generation Core balance Complementary balance University Preproc. Postproc. 1996 X X / Umberto (1995), 1996 X X / Umberto 1996 X F cf. Waste water Umberto 1996 X / X Umberto 1995 X F cf. waste Excel 1996/1997 X / F Excel 1996 X / / Excel X=already carried out, /=not applicable, F=consideration has yet to be carried out. Table 2 Results of the University’s life cycle impact assessment Impact category 1. Consumption of raw-materials 1.1. Fossil energy resources 1.3. Wood 1.4. Water 1.5. Nuclear power 2. Greenhouse effect 3. Ozone depletion 4. Human toxicological impacts 4.1. Lead 4.2. Carbon monoxide 4.3. Sulphur dioxide 4.4. Dust 5. Ecotoxicological impacts 5.1. Ammonia 5.2. Fluorcarbon 5.3. Sulphur dioxide 5.4. Dust 5.5. Nitrogen oxide 6. Photo-oxidant formation (ozone) 7. Acidification 8. Eutrophication 9. Deposits 10. Noise 10.1. Far 10.2. Near lead to an improvement of those categories for which a ‘medium-sized’ impact was ascertained: ‘ecotoxicological impacts of NOx’, ‘photo-oxidant formation’, ‘acidification’, ‘eutrophication’ and ‘nuclear power’. Valuation Very high Not analyzed Small to medium Medium Very high Zero Small Small Small Small to to to to medium medium medium medium Small to medium Small Small to medium Small Medium Medium Medium Medium Small to medium Not analyzed Not analyzed 3.2.5. Building block EM 5: environmental goals In this building block the university sets its environmental goals, as a comparison to the actual situation given in the LCA and the level of technology, the legal requirements, the environmental guidelines or the relevance to society. The goals, which should contain commitment to the continual improvement of the environmental situation at the university, need to be adopted by the senate. They then apply to all university members. In its environmental guidelines the University of Osnabrück committed itself to “set environmental goals with the involvement of university members, and to construct an environmental management system to implement them”. The environmental goals have been developed within the framework of the project and are still in discussion with those responsible in the various administrative departments and the university management. 3.2.6. Building block EM 6: environmental programme An environmental programme is developed in order to implement the requirements described in the environ- 8 P. Viebahn / Journal of Cleaner Production 10 (2002) 3–12 mental goals, containing measures for each of the abovedescribed environmental areas. Whilst the environmental goals are to be attained in the medium term, the environmental programme is to be realised in the short term. Depending on its implementation, the environmental programme influences the ecoaudits of future years. Alongside the ecoaudit, this building block represents the most extensive section, since it also contains the concrete implementation of the measures. Like the environmental goals the environmental programme is still in discussion within the university. 3.2.7. Building block EM 7: environmental report Building block 7 involves writing an environmental report for the university, the aim of which is to inform the public and university members about environmental measures that have already been implemented, and those which still have to be carried out. Unlike the environmental reports of many businesses, its intention is not to give superficial information in the form of promotional material. It could contain a different key area each year, but should always report about the environmental situation of the university. It also serves as part of building block 10 (public relations work). The University of Osnabrück’s “1999 Environmental Report” will be produced as soon as the environmental goals, the environmental programme and the way in which to further implement the environmental management system have been decided upon. 3.2.8. Building block EM 8: environmental information system The aim of building block 8 is to establish an environmental information system (EIS) for the university which corresponds to the requirements of the environmental management system. The main objective of the EIS is to collect, administrate and present all of the relevant data regarding the university in the above-mentioned environmental areas. For this the databanks at the operative level (the individual administrative departments) need to be linked. On the one hand, the EIS should simplify the annual ecobalance. On the other hand, it should facilitate an effective ecocontrolling of the university. Furthermore, information concerning all of the environmental management building blocks can be prepared for presentation to the public and members of the university, for example, via an internal intranet. The EIS can then also be used for environmental training and courses for the staff. A concept for an EIS for the University of Osnabrück was developed in Ref. . Its implementation is intended within the framework of the general management information system, the development of which was started in 1998 . 3.2.9. Building block EM 9: environmental training and courses One of the most significant building blocks encompasses training and courses for university members regarding aspects of environmental protection. The following areas are to be taken into consideration: research/teaching, students, university administration. Areas of importance include the significance of environmental policy, and the aims, programme and demands arising from the EMS for the university, as well as the effects of the individual positions on the environmental situation of the university. In its environmental guidelines the University of Osnabrück committed itself to offering “a range of environment-related training courses for the staff”. Although individual environment-related courses have taken place for over 2 years, a package of events related to the implementation of the new waste concept was offered in the first half of 1998. 3.2.10. Building block EM 10: staff involvement/public relations work Besides training courses, other measures are also required to inform, motivate and involve the staff in order to be able to implement environmental measures as effectively as possible. This building block therefore contains the involvement of university members and related (internal) public relations work. Environmentally friendly behaviour can be encouraged by keeping all staff informed about relative projects within the framework of the environmental management system (exhibitions, brochures, articles), as well as voluntary participation in environmental management (working groups, environmental clubs). It is recommended to establish a suggestion pool in order to involve as many members of staff as possible. In its environmental guidelines the University of Osnabrück committed itself to conduct ‘open discussions’ and carry out ‘specific public relations work’. As a pilot project for this building block measures to implement the new waste concept were organised in the first half year of 1998. This included extensive public relations work, a ‘waste project group’, excursions, a waste action week and a ‘waste and dangerous materials day’. 3.3. Uniting the building blocks to create an environmental management system As can be seen in Fig. 1, a number of relationships exist between the individual building blocks. The building blocks, including the instructions concerning the environmental procedure and their links, result in the EMS. In particular, building blocks 2, 4, 5 and 6 are not static, but mutually influence each other. First of all environmental goals and an environmental programme are derived from the first ecoaudit. The implementation P. Viebahn / Journal of Cleaner Production 10 (2002) 3–12 of the environmental programme will lead to changes in the environmental situation, which will find expression in the results of the next ecoaudit. Additional aspects may also be included in the ecobalances of later years. Both the goals and the programme are modified after each ecoaudit. The results of the described steps form the basis for an ecocontrolling system by the university management and organisational units supported by the EIS. At the same time, these results serve as a basis for measures to involve and train the staff, which, like the environmental guidelines and external environmental regulations, influence the actions of individual university members. They, on the other hand, can influence the environmental situation, which will find expression in the results of the next ecoaudit. The elements which serve as the general framework (UM 2, environmental guidelines; UM 3, environmental regulations; UM 9, Environmental training and courses; UM 10, staff involvement/public relations work) can also be dealt with at the same time as the remaining building blocks. 4. Discussion 4.1. Construction of the environmental management concept The “Osnabrück Environmental Management Model for Universities” was developed as an integrative overall concept for an EMS at universities. It was primarily geared towards the situation at the University of Osnabrück, but can be transferred to other universities without major alterations. For the sake of clarity the various different measures were combined into ten building blocks, which together form the EM model. This model provided the university with a scheme to follow for the final introduction and later continuation of the EM. Likewise the building blocks were constructed separately in order to enable individual colleagues to deal with them separately, block by block. For example, the legal requirements (EM 3) can be completed by the legal department, the environmental report (EM 7) can be written by the press office, the EIS (EM 8) can be constructed by the administrative data processing department, and the organisation of further training courses (EM 9) can be carried out by the personnel department. In this way the system can effectively be integrated into the already existing areas of work within the administration. This means that it is not necessary to create a separate department of environmental protection. However, a central position in the university management is required to coordinate actions and carry out environmental planning. This Environmental Management Coordinator is intended to act as the central focal point of the whole EMS (see below). 9 4.2. Material and energy flow analysis of the university The main emphasis of the development of the EM model was the material and energy flow analysis, followed by the construction of an eco-balance. This part of the project took up considerably more time and required more data than originally planned. One reason for this was the attempt to include as many as possible of the material and energy flows directly caused by the University into the eco-balance, even though only the most important and relevant flows were considered. Furthermore, the majority of the data collection work had to be carried out by the organisers. This led to the loss of valuable time which had been scheduled for the development of concrete implementation measures. The data collection also proved to be very time-consuming because some of the data was not available in EDP-form. A great deal of data were available in the areas of energy, water and hazardous waste, which was due, on the one hand, to the early development of an (almost) suitable counting structure in the 35 university buildings, and on the other hand, to the legal requirements to implement the hazardous substance regulations. In the other areas (see Building Block 4), the collection of data was rather more difficult: 앫 data were not available because they had not been required until then (e.g. commuter traffic, residual waste and paper); 앫 data were only available in manual form (e.g. via inventory lists in the materials stockroom); 앫 data were only available via invoices (e.g. waste disposal); 앫 data were included in files which could not be accessed using SQL-enquiries (e.g. chemicals); 앫 data were collected and entered into files in order to print them out, but were then deleted due to a lack of space (e.g. business trip invoices); and 앫 data should have been known, but were not available (area of the property). Despite these limitations, however, a realistic LCA of a university was carried out, thus providing other universities with a certain standard of procedure. In particular, the evaluation of the material flows using the ISO method of the impact categories was employed for the first time for a university. Although it was not possible to include all material and energy flows (e.g. the postprocess of waste disposal) the results facilitated the formation of concrete recommendations to the decisionmakers at the University, in particular with regard to the reduction of energy consumption (electricity, heating, traffic) and the resulting emissions, in order to achieve a sustainable improvement of the pollution caused by the University. 10 P. Viebahn / Journal of Cleaner Production 10 (2002) 3–12 4.3. Involvement of university staff Collaboration with the administration was effected in exemplary fashion. The contact partners took a great deal of time and trouble to collect the relative data, and to discuss and solve problems. Here the advantage of collaborating with the administration and the university management was proven. Difficulties first arose when it came to implementing the environmental protection measures. Whilst the collection of data can be looked upon as a standard task within the administration, each and every member of the university needs to change their way of thinking in order to achieve a green university. Well-worn forms of behaviour need to be taken into consideration, as well as the scepticism about whether alternative suggestions can lead to an improvement of the environmental situation or not. It was noticeable that many members of staff who were receptive to the ‘green’ idea tended to despair, since their earlier initiatives were often not followed, and solutions to environmental problems that had been elaborated were not implemented for years. A lot of effort is needed to convince people to continue their good work. Moreover, a clear signal from the university management is needed to show that they are serious about environmental protection. 4.4. Need for an environmental management coordinator Although many members of staff have already become involved in promoting environmental aspects in their various spheres of activity, the need for a central Environmental Management Coordinator became apparent. In the past environmental aspects have not always been taken into consideration in the decision-making process, either due to a lack of time or knowledge. For example, a controversial decision by the university management to no longer allow bicycles to be parked inside university buildings led to a state of uncertainty among the staff. This was counterproductive to the efforts made to motivate more people to swap their cars for bicycles. Advertising space was leased to an external company without taking into consideration that their lighting consumes a considerable amount of electricity. The rectification of such errors leads to an unnecessary waste of time and money, which could be avoided or improved through a central Environmental Management Coordinator. Furthermore, the development of the environmental management has to be directed (setting the environmental goals, implementation of the environmental programme, continuation of the ecobalance). In addition, measures are required to provide information and motivate staff, which can be very time-consuming. Meanwhile the university management has decided to nominate an Environmental Management Coordinator for one year, for the time being. 4.5. Application of the results to other universities and their dissemination In view of the heterogeneous structure of German universities it was not possible to take all types and sizes of universities into consideration, since the University of Osnabrück does not have departments for technology or medicine. However, the modular system of the ten building blocks enables the concept to be used for universities of a similar structure. Although the outer shape is given, the concrete form can be adjusted according to the priorities of each respective university. For the environmental audit, for example, it is not necessary to proceed according to ISO norms; the environmental aims and the environmental programme will be different at each university, depending on the respective situation of the material and energy consumption. However, the application of the model for the University of Osnabrück demonstrates an exemplary conversion. A final conference took place on 27–28 November 1998 in Osnabrück in which the results of the project and those of other universities were presented. All contributions of the conference are published in Ref. . The experience made so far is to be collected and published in book form at the beginning of 2000 in order to assist other universities in constructing an EMS . 4.6. “German Network for an Environmentally Sound Development of Universities” Results from the project and the experiences made by the implementation of the EMS will also be disseminated through eco-campus.net, the “German Network for an Environmentally Sound Development of Universities”. The network was established in 1999 by several German universities in order to actively support a sustainable development of universities, focusing on environmental subjects. The project is carried out by the FHW Berlin (Berlin School of Economics) and the University of Osnabrück, and is promoted by the “Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt”. Its initial activities focus on communication, information and further education. As a basis for the exchange of the particular knowledge and experience of the universities serves an internet server, which is being built up since the beginning of 19993. Acknowledgements The authors would like to thank the Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt (German Federal Environmental Foundation), Osnabrück, for their financial support of 3 For further campus.net/. information please refer to http://www.eco- P. Viebahn / Journal of Cleaner Production 10 (2002) 3–12 the project from November 1995 to April 1998. Furthermore we wish to thank Teresa Gehrs, University of Osnabrück, for the translation of the text. Appendix A. Guidelines for Environmental Protection for the University of Osnabrück 2. A.1. Sustainable development Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meets their own needs (World Commission on Environment and Development: Our Common Future, 1987). The University of Osnabrück feels obliged to follow this principle of sustainable development, due to the dramatic global environmental state. With its over 14 000 members and consumption of energy and material, the University of Osnabrück is comparable to a large commercial concern. The running of the University causes considerable environmental damage, which is to be minimised. Furthermore, the University assumes a special societal responsibility, in that it educates and leaves its mark on the future decision-makers of our society. It takes on a multiplier function, and therefore significant responsibility. Moreover, it should not be forgotten that academic research also affects human beings and nature, and that universities are therefore particularly responsible for their research aims and results. Environmental protection should be the responsibility of all students and employees, whilst at work and when travelling to and from the University. It is an executive duty for management personnel. The university will only fulfil this task if as many university members as possible identify themselves with the aims of environmental protection and sustainable development, and actively contribute to the implementation of such aims. For this reason the University of Osnabrück has set itself the following guidelines, in accordance with the CRE-Charter for sustainable development (CRECOPERNICUS). These guidelines should be adopted by all members of the University in their personal area of work or studies, and implemented with innovation. A.2. Guidelines for concern We believe that protection of the environment means preventing danger to people and the environment, the continual reduction in the use of resources and energy, and the minimisation of emissions and waste so that the University can make its contribution to sustainable development. 1. In order to achieve this, the University will determine 3. 4. 5. 6. 11 environmental aims, with the involvement of University members, and will construct an effective environmental management system to put these aims into action. The senate will report regularly on the implementation of the system. All University departments should be linked to the environmental protection programme so that administration and the faculties cooperate in matters concerning environmental protection. Moreover, the University cultivates interchange with other universities to promote the idea of environmental protection. It endeavours to give political and social support in order to achieve the aim of an environmentally friendly university oriented towards the principle of sustainable development. The University conducts open dialogue and undertakes to inform the public so that its environmental protection measures are transparent. The University will provide education, training and encouragement to its employees concerning environmental issues. Prior to purchase, the environmental effects of materials and equipment should be taken into consideration by the University. The most environmentally friendly variants should take precedence, if possible. The University influences its business partners in order to improve the goods and services offered with regard to the environment. Legal and official requirements represent minimum standards which, if possible, should be implemented to an even higher level. A.3. Guidelines for research and teaching The University endeavours to give due weight to environmentally relevant issues in research and teaching. 1. A requirement for the guarantee of freedom in research and teaching is that lecturers and researchers need to be aware of their responsibility for the ensuing consequences. This includes the maintenance of natural resources for present and future generations. Academic staff and students alike therefore endeavour to minimise the negative consequences of their research and teaching. 2. The University’s faculties and interdisciplinary institutions promote academic work in the environmental field, in addition to participation in courses that deal with environmental issues. 3. University members support the networking and interdisciplinary processing of environmentally relevant issues in research and teaching at the University, also in cooperation with other universities. Adopted by the senate of the University of Osnabrück on 16 April 1997. 12 P. Viebahn / Journal of Cleaner Production 10 (2002) 3–12 References   Bildung und Kultur, Fachserie 11, Reihe 4.4: Personal an Hochschulen 1996. Stuttgart: Federal Statistics Office, Metzler-Poeschel, 1998.  Intergrierte Ressourcenplanung — die LCP-Fallstudie der Stadtwerke Hannover AG. Doku-Band 2: Energiebilanzen und Angebotskurven. Hannover: Public Utility Hannover, 1996.  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