Through sustainable development, a central component of the university’s educational mission, knowledge is acquired and transferred in a structured manner, benefiting the well-being of the community and serving as a source of inspiration for society.

After years of sustained effort, the university achieved carbon neutrality by massively reducing greenhouse gas emissions and using the Montmorency Forest carbon sink and carbon credit purchases to offset the rest. Université Laval is the first university in Québec to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to zero, and the first in Canada to do so on an entirely voluntary basis. In February 2017, the university earned a gold rating as part of the international STARS accreditation, ranking 1st in Canada and 2nd worldwide in sustainability.



Université Laval has made sustainable development an institutional priority for a number of years, investing considerable effort into improving quality of life for members of the university community by simultaneously addressing issues related to their environment, standard of living, and lifestyle. It seeks to rally the campus around these values and takes steps to ensure that its own actions reflect the principles of sustainable development.

For the outgoing Vice-Rector, Éric Bauce, "the sustainable development is about ensuring a sustainable quality of life for individuals and their communities by balancing investments in the living environment (environment), lifestyle (society), and standard of living (economy)".



Université Laval has been a socially responsible institution since its founding, and has long taken actions to maintain and enhance quality of life without compromising that of future generations. In 2007, we integrated a formal commitment to sustainable development into our operations and developed a structured approach based on mobilization of the entire community. Every step in our approach is part of a continuum that not only mobilizes stakeholders for a common cause, but also produces tangible and lasting results.

September 2007Created the Sustainable Development Fund with a budget of $2 million spread over 5 years
December 2007Established a consultative body: the Issue Table
September 2008Created an institutional Web portal
November 2008Established the Institutional Sustainable Development Policy (PDF)
June 2009Developed the first Sustainable Development Action Plan (PDF, in French only)
February 2011Produced the first sustainable development report (PDF)
December 2012Developed the second Sustainable Development Action Plan (PDF, in French only)
September 2015Developed the third Sustainable Development Action Plan (PDF)

Sustainable Development Action Plan


Strategic evolution of the sustainable development approach

Three-year planGoalsExamples of actions
  • Define the basics of sustainable development
  • Incorporate sustainable development into major University initiatives
  • Communicate the sustainable development vision
  • Implement a sustainable development policy
  • Create the issue table
  • Update academic regulations
  • Create the sustainable development fund
  • Build awareness of sustainable development
  • Rally community members around a single cause
  • Make members of the University community aware of individual actions they can take
  • Form the network of local stakeholders
  • Roll out the Mon Équilibre UL program
  • Launch the voluntary offset program
  • Develop responsible purchasing product sheets
  • Create the Entrepôt UL
  • Hold the first Responsible Christmas Market
  • Incorporating sustainable development into operations, in line with each unit’s role within the University
  • Getting faculties and units to participate more
  • Informing each sector how they can contribute to the sustainable development approach
  • Consult with managers from various units
  • Make sustainable development part of day-to-day spheres of activity

To participate

As a member of the university community, you are encouraged to adhere to sustainable development values and share our vision. In each sphere of sustainable development, you have opportunities to take concrete action. For details, see the Involvement section.




Office of the Vice Rector, External and International Affairs and Health
Pavillon des Sciences de l'éducation
2320, rue des Bibliothèques
Suite 1634
Université Laval
Québec City (Québec) G1V 0A6