November 16, 2010
The Queen's Sustainability Office has released a draft framework document reaffirming the university's commitment to sustainable practices. The Queen's Sustainability Strategic Framework establishes clear guidelines for how community members can engage with sustainability at Queen's and identifies the administrative bodies that are set up to support them.
"The framework is a roadmap to guide the university toward an environmentally, socially and economically sustainable campus," says Aaron Ball, Queen's sustainability manager.
The document defines sustainability objectives for the university and outlines means for achieving those objectives. It establishes guidelines for future progress on sustainability by outlining an organizational structure, creating a process for evaluating proposed sustainability projects, and detailing six sustainability principles.
The six principles that will guide sustainable practices at the university are:
• The university will strengthen and freely share research and teaching that addresses environmental issues in the sciences, social sciences, humanities, and professional schools.
• The university will provide the same high levels of service to its community while seeking ways to mitigate and improve the environmental impacts associated with the delivery of services.
• The university will develop a culture of sustainability to encourage active participation in sustainability both on campus and beyond.
• The university will take every opportunity to reduce or eliminate the negative environmental impacts of its operations without compromising its high levels of service and academic standards.
• The university will seek to integrate sustainability into the campus planning and financial processes to ensure resources match commitments.
• The university will commit to a greenhouse gas reduction plan that will identify target reduction dates and strategies.
As part of the framework, the Sustainability Office will prepare an annual sustainability progress report based on indicators used by the Council of Ontario Universities and the Sustainable Endowments Institutes.
The Sustainability Office will gather input from the community and consult the Queen's Sustainability Advisory Committee when finalizing the framework.