Queen’s is committed to reducing its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and overall energy consumption.
A signatory to the University and College Presidents Climate Change Statement of Action for Canada, Queen’s developed its first Climate Action Plan in 2016, which pledges to achieve net-zero GHG emissions by 2040.
In 2020, Queen’s was one of 15 founding signatories of the Investing to Address Climate Change: A Charter for Canadian Universities, and the university met its first major milestone target for the reduction of its GHG emissions by 35 percent from 2008 to 2020. Queen’s GHG Inventory Report 2022 outlines the university's second milestone target of 70% reduction by 2030.
In 2022, Queen’s actions to advance the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) led to being ranked in the top 10 of the Times Higher Education (THE) Impact Rankings for the second year in a row.
In the Fall of 2022, a Progress Report on the Climate Action Plan was published to report on the targets previously laid out. The Report includes the several projects Queen’s has underway or in development that will contribute to continuing to reduce our carbon footprint, including the following:
- Installing more efficient ventilation systems in high-energy-use lab spaces such as Chernoff Hall, the New Medical Building, and Biosciences Complex
- Using geo-exchange heating and cooling systems for the 355 King Street West facility and the Duncan McArthur Hall construction project
To ensure Queen’s achieves Net Zero, work is underway to prepare a roadmap that will define the initiatives and investments required to meet our commitments.
In 2023, and for the third straight year, Queen's ranked in the top 10 of the THE Impact Rankings earning third place worldwide and first place in North America out of over 1,700 universities.