You are the climate – how does an educational organisation achieve net zero by 2030? – Switzerland
Forest Climate Weeks of the Bildungswerkstatt Bergwald – Switzerland
30. November 2021
Educational materials on climate change – Switzerland
30. November 2021

You are the climate - how does an educational organisation achieve net zero by 2030?

Author: Rolf Jucker, SILVIVA, Switzerland

A fter the Swiss population’s catastrophic and irrational ‘No’ to the Federal Act on the Reduction of Greenhouse Gas Emission (CO2 Act) in June 2021, it has only become clearer: our individual and collective responsibility to save future generations from the worst consequences of climate change has never been greater.

Environmental and educational organisations are certainly hardly the biggest emitters compared to other industries, or so we would assume. At SILVIVA, we wanted to find out for sure.

That's why we commissioned a CO2 report from Climate Services, which not only surveyed the CO2 footprint of our work as a competence centre, but also that of our external courses.

You can find the results here:
SILVIVA CO2 balance Graphic
SILVIVA CO2 balance detailed report

Time to move?

Granted: our impact is not gigantic. However, we are extremely happy to have gone through this process and to have these results. Only solid knowledge will help us to make decisions that actually make a difference.

What is immediately noticeable is that by moving our offices into net zero buildings, we could halve our CO2 emissions in one fell swoop. With the CO2 Act, the pressure on landlords to take steps towards CO2 neutrality would have been much higher. Now we have to take matters into our own hands. In Zurich, a renovation process presented a possible solution: we had to move into a coworking space for 3 months against the backdrop of COVID19 and in increase in working from home. This has led to a fundamental rethink of the interplay between home office and office work and about how much office space SILVIVA really needs.

On the move together

To this end, we are extremely interested in learning how other organisations solve this. Have you found climate-friendly office forms? Do you know of zero or negative energy buildings in Switzerland that are CO2 neutral that would like to host organisations such as SILVIVA?

What we learned about the impact of our courses is comparatively easy to solve: the impact is almost as high as the total office impact, but if we manage to cook mainly vegetarian food (which is the case) and the participants travel by public transport (which needs work in some regions), we are already well on the way to our goal: net zero by 2030.

We look forward to your ideas on how to reach this target, as well as all offers for net-zero SILVIVA office space!

This article is part of a blog series in view of the SILVIVA annually conference 2021 and the 16th European Forest Pedagogics Congress “How to learn in and with nature in times of climate crisis? - European perspectives and solutions” in Zurich, Switzerland, 11th – 13th May 2022.

It is clear that education must contribute to combating climate change and that environmental education is predestined for this role. This is especially true for forest pedagogy and nature-based environmental education. But how can we do this and how can it be effective?
  • What does contemporary forest pedagogy look like in times of climate change? What projects, programmes and approaches are there?
  • How can/should forest pedagogy inputs/interventions be designed so that they make a contribution against climate change? And how can they be further developed?
  • How can insights from climate education enrich the methodology of forest pedagogy?
These and similar questions will be raised and discussed at the European Forest Pedagogics Congress 2022.

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