Green Campus: Trinity College Dublin gets environmental award

Water consumption on campus reduced by 25 per cent

Trinity College Dublin. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Trinity College Dublin. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Tue, Apr 9, 2013, 06:00

Trinity College Dublin has been awarded a green flag for the quality of its environment as part of An Taisce’s Green-Campus programme. This follows many years of work by students and staff to make it more sustainable.

Water consumption has been reduced by 25 per cent due to the elimination of leaks, behaviour changes and rainwater harvesting, while energy use has been stabilised despite a large building programme and an increase in students.

Waste, energy, water and travel patterns are being monitored, while green roofs promote biodiversity and water retention. The college has 1,200 trees with more being added every year, and the annual Green Week has become one of Trinity’s largest events.

Trinity joins a small number of pioneering Irish third-level institutions – University College Cork; GMIT Castlebar; Coláiste Dhúlaigh, Coolock, north Dublin; Dundalk Institute of Technology; and Ballsbridge College of Further Education – that have won a green flag.

Speaking at the flag-raising ceremony yesterday, director of An Taisce’s environmental education unit Patricia Oliver noted that Trinity College attracted around one million visitors per year. The provost, Dr Patrick Prendergast, said he was delighted by the award.

The Green Campus award is overseen internationally by the Copenhagen-based Foundation for Environmental Education, whose president Jan Eriksen said he was confident that Trinity would be able to meet the challenge of retaining the flag as well as inspiring others.