Can universities be a platform for climate mitigation? Exploring the impacts of carbon pricing in the university setting

Suyeon Lee, Seyeon Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Abstract Climate Change is one of the most important threats in the world today and it is driven by the human-induced build-up of greenhouse gases (GHG) in the atmosphere. Despite worldwide policy efforts from the Kyoto Protocol to the Paris Agreement, global emissions of GHG have continued to steadily increase over the past decade. Against this backdrop, many higher education institutions (HEIs) around the world began to engage in sustainable practices implementing green initiatives on their campuses. Using the waste disposal and the associated GHG emissions data from the academic community, this study describes how HEIs can assume a leadership role in climate mitigation through the implementation of a carbon pricing initiative. Specifically, this study estimates the economic costs of carbon emissions from waste and conceptualizes how revenues generated from carbon pricing can be rechanneled to support carbon reduction efforts in HEIs. By this approach, HEIs not only create incentives for campus users such as students and employees to choose cleaner options but also be able to understand their own carbon footprint and adjust strategy accordingly. While carbon pricing has long been regarded as an alternative approach to tackle carbon pollution, it has not been much discussed in the area of waste management. In this regard, this study attempted to fill this research gap by finding emission reduction potentials in waste management using carbon pricing as a mechanism.

Keywords

  • Higher education institutions
  • Sustainability
  • carbon pricing
  • climate mitigation
  • waste management and recycling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

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