Your voice, York’s future: Sustainability Strategy consultations continue

Aerial Bergeron - Green Roof (July 2023)-1

York University is seeking continued feedback from students, faculty, instructors and staff to inform the renewal of the institutional Sustainability Strategy. Over the next few weeks, community members can provide their input in person or virtually to shape the University’s sustainability priorities and support its journey to become one of the most sustainable universities in Canada.

Sustainability is a core value of the University, and the Sustainability Strategy, planned to cover 2024 to 2030, is critical to ensuring York meets its bold sustainability commitments. Most recently, York announced its plan to reach net-zero emissions by 2040, a decade earlier than originally planned. Both the aspirational target and the renewed Sustainability Strategy will support the York community’s collective responsibility for environmental stewardship in a world increasingly burdened by the consequences of climate change.

“2023 is now being reported as the hottest year on record, with the global average temperature likely to exceed 1.5 degrees Celsius over the next 11 months,” says Mike Layton, York’s chief sustainability officer. “The renewal of York’s Sustainability Strategy is an opportunity to build awareness, inspire lifelong commitment and catalyze action towards creating a more sustainable future.”

The community consultation process began in October 2023, when the Office of Sustainability began hosting workshops and open houses to engage all members of the York community. An option to share feedback via email or by survey was also made available. So far, more than 1,800 York community members have participated in the consultation process.

“After speaking in classrooms, boardrooms, departments and Faculty councils, and even by having conversations with students at tabling events, we’re impressed at the bold ideas that have been shared so far,” says Nicole Arsenault, program director, sustainability. “We’ve heard from students about food on campus, commuting and biodiversity. We’ve received feedback from staff on purchasing and energy use, and from faculty on research and teaching. We’re excited to continue gaining input from everyone – from every level of the University – to create an inspiring strategy with long-term impacts.”

To share feedback, all community members are encouraged to review York’s previous strategy and the Office of Sustainability website before providing feedback through the following channels:

Email the Office of Sustainability at