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Trinity Information » College Policies » Sustainable Development

TCD is an important part of third level education and research in Ireland and abroad. College properties comprise a significant and integral part of the Dublin conurbation. As an educational institution it has a role in and a responsibility to society to promote sustainable development 1 throughout its activities.  This means that teaching, research, services and administrative operations should be conducted in a manner that protects and enhances the environment, conserves natural resources, reduces greenhouse gas emissions, and supports the community and society as a whole. This policy applies across all parts of the College.

Within the resources available to the College from time to time TCD is committed to:

  • Balanced development with regard to the environment, economy and society
  • Managing its campuses in a manner that protects and enhances the local and global environment by establishing quantitative goals for environmental performance
  • Developing its buildings and services with due consideration for the environment using life cycle analysis 2
  • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions
  • Promoting intelligent resource use, namely sustainable transport use, minimisation and reuse of products, environmentally preferable procurement, recycling of waste streams, energy management and water conservation
  • Incorporating the principle of sustainable development into the teaching, training and research activities of the College as far as possible
  • Continuous environmental improvement and pollution prevention throughout its activities

This policy will be actively communicated and promoted to staff and students, and progress and implementation reviewed on an ongoing basis. The policy should be subject to a comprehensive review at least every five years.


1 Sustainable development is defined as development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (Brundtland G (ed) Our Common Future:  The World Commission on Environment and Development, Oxford University Press, 1987). 

2 Life cycle analysis is a technique for assessing the impact on health, environment, and resources of a product throughout its whole life cycle. The objective of a life cycle analysis is to assist in optimising the value of a construction project over its lifetime, having regard to all the direct and indirect project costs.

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