SLU news

Good environmental management results following external audit of Ull

Published: 01 April 2019

Last week, RISE (the Research Institutes of Sweden) carried out an external audit of Ull’s environmental certificates, which include the university management and administration. The audit began at one of our estates – Hallfreda – on Gotland.

“The results are very good and I am especially glad to hear that we have improved in several different areas, for example in relation to carbon dioxide emissions and the use of video conferences,” said Vice-Chancellor Karin Holmgren. “We often perform better than we think we do.”

Johanna Sennmark, Environmental Manager, stated the following: “Audits are intense, but they also allow an overview of operations, and commitment at SLU is considerable.” In total, there were 4 non-conformities and 4 improvement proposals. Below is a short summary of the results:

Our environmental work constantly improves; partly in regard to improved environmental performance, partly due to simpler and clearer working methods. Examples:

  • clearer forestry and agricultural operation objectives;
  • clearer internal audit planning, which helps ensure that all operations are audited;
  • clearer descriptions of specific environment requirements, which include building activities and real estate management;
  • clearer guidelines for the possession of motorised vehicles;
  • more complete action plans relating to objectives;
  • more stabile document management.

Environmental performance within the certificate has, among other things improved in the following ways:

  • reduced carbon dioxide emissions from travel and transport;
  • considerably increased number of online meetings;
  • reduced amount of fossil fuels.


  • committed staff with high environmental expertise;
  • sound objectives in relation to significant environmental aspects;
  • environmental impact measurements;
  • students’ environmental commitment.

Improvement areas:

  • clearer communication with entrepreneurs, temporary workers and those who carry out duties on behalf of the organisation;
  • non-conformity management (system and analysis);  
  • increased awareness of operational system strengths;
  • the organisation has come to the conclusion that it needs to be better at communicating its environmental work, both internally and externally.