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Overview of the Project

The Erasmus Goes Green (EGG) project aims at lowering the impact that the Erasmus+ programme has on the environment. Its main objective is to find solutions to reduce the transport-related carbon footprint of higher education students taking part in Erasmus mobility within Europe and that of staff participating in transnational project cooperation activities.

To reduce this carbon footprint, the project will look into different ways to communicate to higher education students and staff the ecological impact of their choices regarding the means of transport they use to go on mobility abroad and provide them with solutions to make better choices, with the involvement of policy makers.

In this sense, students and staff, far from being discouraged from going on mobility abroad, will be encouraged to do so in an environmentally-friendly way whereby they are aware of their CO2 footprint and nudged into minimising and offsetting it wherever possible.

The project will help to:

- Determine the transport-related carbon footprint of higher education students and staff taking part in mobility through Erasmus+: establish the CO2 baseline for the Erasmus programme 2014-2020 and produce a CO2 forecast for the Erasmus programme 2021-2027.

- Raise the environmental awareness of higher education students and staff by offering them a digital tool to visualise their transport-related Erasmus carbon footprint and provide them with tailored suggestions and tips on how to offset it. This will include comparisons between different means of transport and their associated carbon footprint.

- Set up incentives incentives (eg “green top-ups” for students choosing to travel by train) to influence the choices of higher education students and staff and evaluate the efficiency of these incentives.

- Propose higher education students, higher education staff and policy makers options for offsetting carbon emissions.

- Produce a handbook for students and guidelines for higher education institutions on how to experience student mobility in an environmentally-friendly way.

- Provide policy makers with targeted policy recommendations to implement changes within the Erasmus programme that encourage both greener individual mobility and more sustainable transnational partnerships in the field of higher education.

This will allow the European Commission to better monitor the environmental impact of the programme, establish a reliable CO2 baseline, design green indicators and targets, and ultimately implement changes to the programme rules that translate into a lower carbon footprint.