Sustainability at Business Academy Aarhus

How does Business Academy Aarhus work with sustainability?

Business Academy Aarhus is a large educational institution with a lot of students and employees. We have many programmes and courses in which we teach companies and students about sustainability.

As a company, we also have our own climate footprint, which we are very aware of. We have defined several initiatives that we have been working on for many years. This concerns, for example, energy, the canteen, waste disposal and purchasing.

Sustainability is a continuous process, which is why we try to get better each year. Here you can see the areas we are working with to become more sustainable. And what the next steps are.

Focus area: Energy

Solar cells

What are we doing today - and what does this mean?

We have solar cell panels at the following campuses: Sønderhøj 7G, Ringvej Syd 104 and Hasselager Allé 8.

At Ringvej Syd and at Sønderhøj 7G we produce approx. 27% of our electricity consumption via solar cells. In total, we produce about 11% of the Academy’s electricity consumption via solar cells.

What is the next step?

We are investigating the possibilities for solar cell panels on the roof of Sønderhøj 30.

 

Energy management/certification

What are we doing today - and what does this mean?

Centrally, we can regulate heating and cooling at all addresses. So, we can time regulate heating etc. on weekends, and during holiday periods etc.

We have hour-to-hour monitoring of our consumption of electricity, water, and heating, so we can quickly stop any overconsumption - e.g. if a toilet runs.

The buildings Ringvej Syd 104 and Sønderhøj 7G are DGNB silver certified. This means that the buildings meet several specified requirements for sustainability.

What is the next step?

We are currently exploring where we can optimise to an even greater degree. E.g., with sensors for lighting in corridors, offices, etc.

Lighting

What are we doing today - and what does this mean?

In all the Academy’s departments, we have either LED or energy-saving lighting. When switching from traditional light sources to LED, we save 12 watts per installation, we get 40% more light and the bulbs last 30% longer on average.

What is the next step?

Throughout 2021, lighting will be replaced in all classrooms with LED. This will happen in all buildings.

Transport

What are we doing today - and what does this mean?

To promote the use of bicycles as a means of transport, we have expanded the number of bicycle parking spaces at our campuses.

At Sønderhøj 30, next to the main entrance, we have set up a bicycle pumping station, and it is possible to borrow a small repair kit from the reception if you have punctured etc.

A bicycle pumping station has also been set up at Ringvej Syd. It is next to the goods lift, and bicycle equipment can also be borrowed from the reception.

What is the next step?

We are currently investigating the possibility of setting up charging stations for electric cars on campus.

Any future replacements of the Academy’s vehicles will be with either electric or hybrid cars, so that the transport, which mainly takes place between campuses will be as CO2-friendly as possible.

In the autumn, it is expected that the Academy’s employees will start using FDM’s app "Ta 'Med". Through this App, carpooling can be organised for all employees, and also with neighbouring companies.

The implementation consists of promotion and internal information to get as many people as possible to take part in the scheme. As soon as we have some experience with staff, we will assess whether there is any potential in sharing it with the students as well.

Focus area: Purchasing

Furniture

What are we doing today - and what does this mean?

Our newer office furniture, chairs in group facilities, chairs in the canteen, etc. all have a Nordic or European ECO label.

What is the next step?

We buy furniture for the Academy based on certain criteria so that desks, shelves, etc. are all interchangeable between the different departments.

Sustainability is always included as a decision factor when upholstery for chairs etc. is chosen.

Cleaning

What are we doing today - and what does this mean?

About 75% of our cleaning products are Eco labelled. It is currently not possible to get the last 25%, as we need products that can clean optimally.

What is the next step?

We regularly screen the market for new and better products that can clean with a satisfactory result.

Purchasing in general

What are we doing today - and what does this mean?

In all tenders (of which we have quite a few as we are a state-owned organisation), we incorporate a focus on sustainability, so that we ensure our suppliers also work with green conversion.

What is the next step?

Not specified at present.

Focus area: Canteen

Packaging

What are we doing today - and what does this mean?

Plastic cutlery and plastic containers for salad bars etc. have been replaced with degradable products.

What is next step?

We are working to reduce the use of plastic with about 70% compared to 2019.

 

 

Organic

What are we doing today - and what does this mean?

The canteen at the Academy has an organic bronze mark, which means that between 30 and 60% of the canteen’s purchases of food and beverages are organic.

What is the next step?

Nothing further is currently planned.

Food waste

What are we doing today - and what does this mean?

We reduce food waste by selling excess food at a favourable price.

Several dishes for staff lunches are prepared on plates so that it not only looks nice, but also reduces the amount of food served.

What is the next step?

From August 2021, we will start selling surplus food via the canteen’s web shop.

We collaborate with DAKA Re-food, which recycles leftover food for, among other things, biofuels. To reduce food waste, employees taking part in the lunch scheme will, from August 2021, be asked, on a weekly basis, to indicate when they will be eating.

Focus area: Waste disposal

Sorting

What are we doing today - and what does this mean?

Overall, the Academy has approx. 30 tons of waste per. year. At all campuses we sort these types of waste:

  • Cardboard / paper
  • General waste
  • Glass
  • The canteen sorts bio
  • Hazardous Waste
  • Electronic scrap
  • Batteries

From 2021, waste sorting has been started for all students / employees at our Ringvej Syd campus.

What is the next step?

We want to start having waste sorting at all our campuses, so that all students and staff can easily sort their waste.

We want to increase the proportion of waste that can be recycled.

Waste collection

What are we doing today - and what does this mean?

The waste sorting that has been started entails less need for waste collection.

What is the next step?

We are working to further reduce the amount of general waste so that we can limit the number of weekly waste collections.

The status of each our focus areas was updated in August 2021.

How can you act sustainably as a student or employee?

We have about 10,000 students and course participants at the Academy, as well as about 400 employees. Each of us can try daily to reduce the climate footprint we leave while at work or studying.

Here are some suggestions:  

  1. Cycle. This does not emit any CO2.
  2. If you can’t cycle, use public transport (bus / light rail)
  3. If you do drive, arrange to drive with others.
  4. Print only when absolutely necessary. Print on both sides of the paper.
  5. Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
  6. Only buy food you can actually eat.
  7. Bring a water bottle and refill from the Academy’s water stations.
  8. Hand-in deposit bottles to the canteen so that they can be recycled.
  9. Turn off screens and lights if you are the last to leave a room.
  10. Limit your use of video streaming, etc.