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University of Basel


Public transport near the University of Basel, Faculty of Law
Image: University of Basel, Faculty of Law, Mark Niedermann

Students are taking action to reduce CO2 emissions from air travel associated with scientific activities. The University of Basel is taking responsibility and working on an implementation concept.

Goals 2019 - 2021

Building on the 2018 database (see "Status 2018"), the University of Basel developed goals and actions for the 2019-2021 timeframe to further strengthen sustainable mobility.


Reducing flight-related greenhouse gas emissions

  • Developing specific reduction goals and proposals for action to reduce flight-related greenhouse gas emissions

Sustainability Office


Improving the data available on greenhouse gas emissions from business trips

  • Setting up a framework for collecting and preparing data on air travel-related greenhouse gas emissions from the University of Basel 2017–2018

Sustainability Office in collaboration with Finance & Controlling, Accounting department


Improving infrastructure and support for virtual meetings

  • Setting up several classrooms in the Main Building with the necessary technical equipment for virtual meetings and collaborations

Facilities Office

  • Preparing a concept for procurement, maintenance and support for virtual meetings at the University of Basel, coordinating the roles of Facilities and IT Services.

Office of the Executive Director

Status 2018

Against the backdrop of the «Hitzesommer», climate protests, student strikes and debates about «flying scientists», the harmful climate effects of air travel have also taken center stage in Basel in 2018. The university cannot yet evaluate the detailed data on business trips and commuting, but the results from other universities have shown that air travel makes up a considerable portion of the carbon footprint.

One student initiative aimed specifically at reducing air travel, which the University of Basel Senate advocated in December 2018, has added momentum to the mobility debate at the university. The demands of the initiative:

  • Students and lecturers should stop flying for trips of less than 1000 km.
  • In addition, a statistical survey of the data on air travel should be established, and the range of possibilities for virtual meetings should be expanded.

Together with the relevant stakeholders, the Sustainability Office is currently working on an implementation concept for reducing air travel, which will be submitted in the fall semester 2019.


Five students – Oriana Fasciati (German, History), Jeannine Fluri (Biology), Iva Culjak (Eastern European Cultural Studies, Political Science), Juri Schmidhauser (Sociology, Art History) and Jonas Hinck (Middle Eastern Studies, History) – introduced an initiative to the Senate in the fall of 2018 to reduce air travel. In a video, Iva, Juri and Jonas explain what motivated them to start the initiative.

«Tatort Mobilität» – Sustainability Week 2018

During the five days of the Sustainability Week, held from April 16-20, 2018, participants explored many intriguing, unresolved questions relating to the topic of mobility: How far does our food travel before it lands on our plates? Can digitalization and e-mobility reduce the environmental impact of mobility? And what can we do in our everyday lives to help?


Services & further information

  • Discounted car sharing: University of Basel students and staff can take advantage of a discounted trial or annual plan with car sharing provider Mobility.
  • Rent a road bike in the Unibas look: Since the summer of 2018, staff working in the Main Building and Petersgraben 35 can rent a mint-colored fix-gear bike during work hours (info available from Team Marketing & Event).
  • On the Sustainability Office webpage you can find the brochure «Sustainability: Tips for Everyday Life» and the fact sheet «Sustainability on the road».
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