Sustainability- the pillars

We intend to realise this ambition based on the following pillars:

1. Travel

Our footprint in pre-COVID year 2019 was nearly two-thirds determined by our business travel, especially air travel. There is much to gain here! The motto is: travel less, travel differently (with more sustainable forms of transportation such as trains) and as a final step: compensate.

The heat pumps, which further increase heat from the data center for heating Nikhef’s N-building in Amsterdam

2. Energy – building

The building in Amsterdam Science Park is being renovated and, upon completion (mid-2023), will be able to “get off the gas grid,” thanks to good insulation and reuse of residual heat from the Nikhef data center. Cooling will be provided by a sustainable cold source in the ground. Electricity is already being purchased sustainably by Nikhef (renewable energy generated in the Netherlands).

3. Waste

Nikhef is working to reduce waste streams. Together with our partners at the Amsterdam Science Park, we are working on separate waste collection and setting up a central environmental square. Sustainable procurement is part of this ambition. For example, Nikhef will include sustainability as a criterion in tenders.

The new waste bins in the Nikhef building in Amsterdam

4. Behaviour/attitude

Sustainability is achieved through change in attitude and behavior. Within Nikhef, we therefore address each other on this topic.

Instead of meat and fish, vegetarian lunches are more often opted for

5. Primary process – (astro)particle physics

In our scientific activities, we pay structural attention to the sustainability of our experiments. For example, on the efficient use of computing. The topic is put on the agenda at our scientific meetings.

Read the interviews with Nikhef’s sustainability ambassadors about the pillars

This NRC newspaper article gives an example of the discussion surrounding sustainable particle physics (Dutch language only)


Want to know more about these pillars, please get in touch with us.