Results of the 2020 environmental management report

Bild av Lund C:s perrong. Foto Lunds kommun.

Emissions from business travel by air dropped by 86% compared with the previous year, but energy consumption was not much affected by the pandemic. The environmental management report for 2020 has now been submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency and shows that 5 out of 7 relevant environmental targets were met. For example, the University has approved new investment regulations for fossil-free investments in securities, signed a collaboration agreement for sustainability with Akademiska Hus and held a workshop with University management on the risks and opportunities of maintaining low rates of air travel.

Of course, the unusual year of 2020 had an enormous impact on the statistics for business travel at Lund University. The number of flights dropped by around 80% and the number of train journeys by around 75%. The trips that appear in the statistics mainly took place during January and February 2020. This means a reduction of almost 5 000 tons of CO2 emissions compared with 2019. Maintaining a low rate of air travel is necessary to achieve the target of halving emissions of greenhouse gases by 2023 (reference year 2018).

Expenses for business travel in private cars did not drop as much, while the distances travelled by car decreased by 34%. The explanation is probably that travel by car was safer for individuals in terms of infection risk.

During 2020, total energy consumption decreased somewhat compared with the previous year: approx. -3%. The decrease is mainly thought to depend on measures to increase energy-efficiency in buildings, and partly on reduced ventilation and lighting as a result of many premises being practically empty for most of the year. However, some research equipment was used to a larger extent due to shift work during the pandemic. Altogether, the changed work patterns during the year do not seem to have affected energy consumption in the University’s premises to any great degree. Since 2019, all supplied electricity, district heating and district cooling come from renewable sources.

The complete environmental management report (in Swedish)

Read more about the Sustainability plan for Lund University 

Contact person for the environmental management report: maria [dot] nilsson [at] bygg [dot] lu [dot] se (Maria Nilsson), environmental coordinator at LU Estates.