Plans for the future

Reduce the CO2 emissions for campus energy supply to zero.

If we succeed in establishing a geothermal well (to be decided in 2018), in combination with the purchase of Dutch wind energy, the solar energy generation, and energy savings, our CO2 emissions will in 2020 have been reduced by up to 80%. What remains are solutions for the peak heat demands, that still need natural gas. Biomass (gasification), high temperature thermal storage, and/or the further introduction of (large scale) heat pumps are options that need further study. Depending on the 2018 developments, we expect that a CO2 neutral campus energy supply can be achieved around 2025.

Structurally broaden the sustainable campus development scope and international collaborations

Projects have been launched on sustainable procurement, waste treatment, food supply, ICT, circular economy and other ‘non-energy’ items (more on that here). creating interaction between students, staff and facility departments, yielding a concrete ‘working space’. However, it is still an important question how we concentrate our efforts effectively on those items and where we can make the societal difference.

An important guideline for sustainable development are the 17 United Nations goals, addressing worldwide needs. It shows the comprehensiveness of our 21st century challenges and gives a framework for the input of technical universities.  

Some leading universities have set goals for sustainable development, typically covering some 15 items. An example is the Harvard sustainability plan.

The TUD Green Office made appointments in 2016 with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Harvard University, and the Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich (ETH) to intensify cooperation, with a focus on connecting campus developments with academic agendas and thus meaningful societal impact. A TU-Delft long term sustainability plan will be established in dependence of the outcomes of this process.

Strengthen the involvement of staff and students

In the past years, quite a few new Green Office projects have been launched involving tens of scientists and some 100 students. The GO overarching role for around 20 Delft student communities working on sustainable development is getting its shape, but can be strengthened further. A main challenge is still to involve the TU Delft community at large in clearly visible achievements. Two important tracks in 2017 were a cooperation with the FMRE department to increase the sustainability of the food supply, also leading to “sustainable restaurant experiences”, and the establishment of student communities at faculty level, stimulating faculty exposure and faculty specific sustainable projects.

In 2018, we want to continue this route and also get up to speed with our newest projects involving waste separation on campus and sustainability in education. The available waste separation data is currently being analyzed and the topic is put into a framework so that it can be incorporated in courses and theses, more info on this project here. On sustainability in education, the study gids information is analyzed and will soon be published. Besides that, we are forming a group of sustainability minded professors and students to create a shared vision and come in action. More info on our involvement with education here.

Interested to get involved in any of these projects? Contact us!