The University of Southampton becomes one of the latest higher education institutions to join the International Universities Climate Alliance (IUCA) which focuses on ‘collaborating for climate impact.’
Despite the lockdown of the university due to the COVID-19 outbreak, UoS ‘decided not to delay formation of the Alliance due to the pressing and ongoing need to accelerate climate action.’
The IUCA was founded in Sydney, Australia, and since its beginnings the focus has been to gain more members who are involved in climate research. The alliance then identifies the most effective ways to relate the research-based facts to the public.
The main aims of the IUCA is to inform different governments and businesses about their climate impacts through the universities’ research, while also focusing on sharing knowledge and ‘enabling innovation in climate research and its application.’
University of Southampton President and Vice-Chancellor, Mark E. Smith, said:
The University of Southampton is recognised as an important global contributor into the research underpinning climate change and evidence as to how we should modify the way we live. It was great to be asked to be part of such a powerful consortium of universities across the world.
Leading the Southampton team is Professor Rachel Mills, the University’s Dean of Environmental and Life Sciences, who added:
As the University’s Sustainability Champion, I am proud to represent us in this new Alliance. We will be drawing on the expertise, creativity and passion of our staff and students right the way across the Institution to collectively address this urgent priority for global society.
The academic lead of the UNSW Climate Change Grand Challenge, Professor Matthew England, describes the need for the alliance:
Worldwide interest to act on climate change is strong but the pace of action has been far too slow. The Alliance aims to accelerate the global response by being a leading voice for scientifically based mitigation and adaptation strategies.
University of Southampton join eight other British universities in the worldwide initiative, as well as a number of universities across five continents.