• Sustainable development,
  • Study Programme,
  • Energy transition,

Centrale Nantes creates a Net-Zero Emissions project-based specialisation

The Net-Zero Emissions project-based specialisation prepares students to support companies in their efforts to reduce their carbon footprint.

on September 1, 2019

In order to limit global warming to 1.5°C, the IPCC concludes that we must reduce our CO2 emissions by 45% (from 2010 levels) by 2030, reaching 'net zero' by the middle of the century. The necessary actions to achieve this must be implemented as a matter or urgency. Centrale Nantes has created a Net-Zero Emissions project-based specialisation, a course that prepares students to support the process of carbon footprint reduction.

Since the beginning of the academic year, engineering programme students at Centrale Nantes have been able to choose the Net-Zero Emissions specialisation. This second/third year specialisation confers students with the knowledge and skills they need to take action on this issue in their future career.

In concrete terms, the project-based specialisation supports the school in its efforts to achieve net-zero emissions by delivering:
  • A carbon footprint for Centrale Nantes, evaluating direct and indirect emissions
  • Tools to measure the carbon footprint for the school also on an individual basis to assess the individual in relation to others and encourage collective action
  • Awareness workshops and materials
  • A proposed climate action plan based on the carbon footprint
  • Regular project progress deliverables
  • A post-project assessment of the impact of the actions taken by the specialisation to reduce Centrale Nantes' emissions

A specialisation developed in partnership with students to meet their expectations

The content of the specialisation was developed on the initiative of students and faculty Centrale Nantes; this partnership in the development of the content is a specific feature of the project-based specialisations.

Centrale Nantes students are particularly aware of the challenges associated with ecological transition. For the start of the 2020 academic year, Geneviève Ferone Creuzet, Vice-President of the Nicolas Hulot Foundation and of the Think Tank "The Shift Project", gave the welcome address. This was a strong signal to the students of the school's ecological commitment. At the same time, they were all invited to take part in the Climate Collage, a fun, collective intelligence workshop on how the climate works and the consequences of its imbalance.

The Shift Project, in a study entitled "Mobiliser l’enseignement supérieur sur le climat" (Mobilizing higher education on climate), points out the absence of courses addressing climate-energy issues in 76% of the courses on offer in France. However, 26% of engineering courses offer mandatory courses on the topic, compared to 6% in business schools and 7% in universities. With this project-based specialisation on net-zero emissions, Centrale Nantes is enhancing its course offering on climate-energy issues and positioning itself as a committed player in energy transition.

Alongside more than 80 heads of institutions and 1,000 research professors, Arnaud Poitou, Director of Centrale Nantes, was one of the signatories of a petition to the French government to "initiate a transition strategy for higher education that positions climate change as the primary emergency. The petition stresses the urgent need to ensure that "no student be able to complete a course of study in higher education without having understood the causes and consequences of climate change and worked to identify possible solutions. "
Published on March 12, 2021 Updated on March 12, 2021