Stockholm University aims to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions, primarily by reviewing its air travel habits. The goal of the University’s meeting and travel policy is to replace business travel with travel-free meetings as much as possible.

The University’s carbon emissions are offset by the German organisation Atmosfair through investments into small-scale CDM (Clean Development Mechanism) projects, which have been approved by the UN’s CDM Executive Board with consideration for the social aspects of sustainable development (the so-called Gold Standard). Atmosfair is known for having low administrative costs and high transparency, as well as using a scientific basis for the calculation of greenhouse gas emissions from air travel. Because of the EU’s emission trading system and the far too generous allocation of emission allowances, these projects are carried out outside of Europe. Within Europe, small-scale CDM projects would not have a positive effect on greenhouse gas emissions. 

Support for four projects

The University’s carbon offset fee goes to four projects, one of which involves small-scale biogas facilities (2-10 m3) for cooking in Nepal. The gas is produced by fertiliser, agricultural waste products, and human waste. In addition to offsetting its carbon emissions, the University improves the air quality in these households. By installing biogas facilities for cooking, the households avoid hazardous smoke from open wood fires. The University also supports the reconstruction of twenty thousand biogas facilities that were destroyed by the earthquake in Nepal in the spring of 2015. In a third project, small-scale hydroelectric plants are built in Honduras, which provide renewable energy to about eleven thousand households.