The University of Ljubljana Academy of Fine Arts and Design (UL ALUO) seeks to address the climate and environmental emergency in a substantive and, even more so, active way and to ensure the green transition towards a zero-carbon future.
At its session on 8 December 2021, the UL ALUO Senate voted unanimously to pass the Resolution on Declaring a Climate and Environmental Emergency and approve the joining of the global initiative of universities for transitioning towards a zero-carbon world, called the Race to Zero, started by The Alliance for Sustainability Leadership in Education – EAUC>.
Resolution on Declaring a Climate and Environmental Emergency
The Higher Education Sustainability Initiative – HESI was established in 2012 ahead of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro (Rio +20). The mission of the HESI organisation is to work together with the United Nations in order to permanently link higher education institutions to science and green policy-making. By adopting the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in 2019, the initiative developed into a resolution that appeals to higher education institutions to declare a climate and environmental emergency.
More than 300 universities and other higher education institutions have so far adopted the proposed resolution and declared a climate and environmental emergency. In 2022, the UL ALUO is joining the initiative and thus committing to a joint long-term sustainability plan with the following objectives:
- achieving carbon-neutrality at the institution level by 2030 (or 2050 at the latest);
- redirecting and obtaining funding for action-oriented research in the fields relevant to climate change and building skills and competences in these same fields;
- increasing the scope of sustainability-related material in the curricula and other study programmes with the aim of raising public awareness.
Global Initiative of Universities for a Zero Carbon World
UL ALUO also joined the global initiative of universities for transitioning towards a zero-carbon world, Race to Zero, started by The Alliance for Sustainability Leadership in Education.
In joining the initiative, UL ALUO commits to perform analyses, specify objectives and formulate a plan of action for achieving these objectives, all within a year of signing up. By signing up, the university undertakes on the above basis to fulfil its pledges to work towards achieving carbon neutrality as soon as possible (by 2050 at the latest), in line with the massive efforts of many individuals, organisations and movements to limit the global warming to 1.5°C. The pledge also includes an interim objective to reduce the carbon footprint of the institution by at least 50% by 2030. 1094 universities and higher education institutions have so far joined the initiative. Joining the global initiative makes UL ALUO the first Slovenian institution to take this step.
Why have we taken this step?
The climate crisis is one of the greatest threats facing our society. UL ALUO is responsible for reducing its own environmental impact and plays an especially important role in education about environmental and social issues, as well as in supporting climate action through its research.