What does the Faculty Green Team entail?
'We are a new initiative and fall under the Green Hub, UT's central sustainability hub that organises and coordinates initiatives. A lot is happening at UT to achieve the main goal of being climate-neutral by 2030, but it is difficult to keep an overview and to know what is happening in the field of sustainability within de faculties. Hence our arrival. We will work in five teams - one per faculty - in which students and staff will be the eyes and ears within the faculty and connect initiatives. The many ideas out there now do a lot to raise awareness, but often do not translate into action and behavioural change. That's where we want to make a difference.'
That sounds little innovative compared to the recently established UT Climate Centre. Don't your goals and interests clash?
'No, on the contrary. In fact, the Climate Centre and Cheryl de Boer are actually affiliated with the ITC team within our initiative. The Climate Centre goal is to foster and connect the UT’s climate-related research and educational strengths, collaborate with stakeholders to enhance impact and facilitate a sense of community. We want to support UT staff with sustainability ideas, organise events and engage in internal and external collaborations. The ultimate goal is make the UT the most sustainable educational institution in the European Union.'
Today you are launching the initiative with a comprehensive programme. What is on the agenda?
'We first want to tell attendees about the Green Hub. After all, I expect that many students do not know exactly what they are doing. Furthermore, we want to tell students and staff how we think we will be successful. We will zoom in on the initiatives that already exist, set goals with each other, go through workshops and highlight what is going well and what could be improved.'
Of the five faculties, only three applied. Why are BMS and EEMCS missing?
‘The proposal for the Faculty Green Team initiative was sent out in March to all five faculty boards. ITC joined right away, followed by TNW and ET. We did not yet receive a message from the other two faculties, but I expect them to join soon, so that we can start working with five teams.'