Properties, Construction, Open Spaces (Campus Design)

The higher education institution explains how new-builds, extensions, refurbishment, renovations and building operations at the institution are planned and completed in a resource-efficient, climate-friendly way, including the use of renewable energy. This relates to both the way in which building work is completed and the use of space and land, including the impact on biodiversity. Furthermore, the higher education institution should explain whether it manages the buildings itself or uses external service providers.

The higher education institution explains how it designs and manages open spaces (including light smog, noise and surfacing) and how it safeguards and improves the quality of user experience (campus design).

The Green Campus concept of the Environmental Campus Birkenfeld already includes a CO2-neutral energy supply. The communication building, which was completed in 2012, and the sports hall, which opened in 2016, are both particularly energy-efficient buildings that comply with the zero-emissions concept further support and thus represent special highlights within the scope of energy management on campus. As an energy-plus building, the communications building was awarded the "Green House Number" by the state of Rhineland-Palatinate in 2018. More than 46,000 square feet of campus grounds are landscaped and offer numerous benches, Flowering meadows, and orchards cozy places to linger for the students and employees. With the help of students, the campus is to be improved in terms of sustainability. For example, due to the commitment of the students, a garden with beds was created, which can be used by staff and students alike for fruit and vegetable growing. Vegetable cultivation can be used. Additionally, during the freshman orientation weeks, annual workshops are held to improve the sustainability aspects of the campus through a wide variety of activities. For example, a herb spiral has already been built, and bee houses for the campus bees have been built by the students themselves.

Since 2019, each workshop has focused on one of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
To support ecosystem services, the university has also created numerous wetlands on campus grounds, as well as reduced lawn mowing in the flowering meadow areas to provide habitat for insects and microorganisms. In addition, the wetlands are used to collect rainwater, which can then be used in toilet flushing and other processes.

Specific objectives for promoting biodoversity can be found in section 3 "Objectives" of this declaration of conformity. Detailed information on biodiversity on campus and land use can be found in the chapter "Biodiversity at the Birkenfeld Environmental Campus" in the current german sustainability report.