Energy, Climate Change & Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Climate change is caused by an increase in Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions from the burning of fossil fuels (such as coal, oil and gas) for energy. GHGs trap heat in our planet's atmosphere and cause global temperatures to rise, resulting in climate-related disasters such as extreme heatwaves, heavy flooding and reduced food harvests.

Lightbulb iconThe UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) recognize that access to energy is a cornerstone of a just society. However, in order to avoid the worst effects of climate change, this energy must come from renewable sources that do not contribute to GHG Emissions.

Our Objectives

Trinity has adopted four energy objectives to reduce our GHG Emissions:
1) Increase energy efficiency by 33% from 2006 baseline.
2) Increase renewable energy use by 14%.
3) Reduce GHG Emissions (Direct & Indirect) by 2% each year.
4) Create a plan for Climate Change (Mitigation & Adaptation) by 2020.

Our Sustainability Report details the progress that has been made in their implementation.

What Can I do Data & Results Green Map


Green Tips

Each of us has a responsibility to live sustainably - our Sustainability Guides are full of tips on how you can reduce your GHG Emissions!

Here are our Top 3 Green Tips for minimizing your energy consumption:

  1. Unplug/ switch off the plug for any electrical item that is not in use. Power cords and appliances continue to draw up to 40% electricity even when they are not in use, if they are plugged in.
  2. Turn off unnecessary lights when a room is not in use or there is sufficient daylight.
  3. Heated appliances use the most electricity, so air dry as much as you can. Let your hair and clothes dry naturally instead of using electricity.

Icons for energy consumption

UN Sustainable Development Goal 7 is to ensure access to affordable, reliable, and modern energy for all.

UN Sustainable Development Goal 13 is to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.

Did You Know?
In 2016 Trinity became the first university in Ireland to divest from fossil fuel investments thanks to a student-led campaign!

Our current contracts for electricity supplies provide for 34% of all electrical power to come from renewable sources such as wind generation.

The Estates and Facilities office puts huge work into managing energy consumption and energy efficiency projects - learn more on their website!

The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) offers energy grants to all homeowners to help make your home warmer and more energy efficient!

Ireland 2050 is an Energy Institute initiative to enable and empower everyone to learn about Ireland's current energy system and participate in our future energy choices.