Swansea students bring green web searching to campus

Planting trees could now be just a simple internet search away at Swansea University.

The University’s Sustainability team is working with both students and colleagues to bring Ecosia - “the search engine that plants trees” - to campus.

From February 4, green search engine Ecosia will become the default search engine on Internet Explorer on all Swansea University open access student PCs. There are currently over 1200 devices in the University’s learning environments and study spaces.

Ecosia works just like other search engines but uses its profits to plant trees.

At least 80% of the surplus income from Ecosia’s advertising revenue is used to support reforestation projects across the globe with current planting projects including Burkina Faso, Madagascar, Indonesia and Peru.

The campaign to bring Ecosia to Swansea University was initiated by students Jean-Louis Button and Alice Evans.

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Alice Evans, a Geography student in the College of Science, said:

“We are excited to see the rollout of Ecosia at Swansea University. Using Ecosia is such a simple change that really makes a big difference; rural communities are transformed with improved soil quality, prevention of desertification, habitats of endangered wildlife are protected, biodiversity is supported and, most importantly, planting trees is one of the greatest ways to combat climate change.

“The Ecosia search engine is just as good as Google or Bing, but with Ecosia you can help transform entire landscapes, whilst benefiting communities and wildlife far and wide.”

Teifion Maddocks, Sustainability Officer at Swansea University, said:

“Sustainable initiatives such as these demonstrate how making simple adjustments to our daily habits, both individually and collectively, can have a really positive environmental impact.

“Trees are some of the planet’s most efficient carbon filters so this is a brilliant way of helping us to reduce our carbon footprint with very little effort.”

Glen Donnachie, Media & IT Manager at Swansea University added:

“We are delighted to have been able to work in partnership with students to bring this green initiative to campus. We are now keen to work more closely with Ecosia to explore ways of tracking and measuring the University’s collective efforts.

“We have made it easy for students to make the switch to sustainable online surfing with Ecosia but we are keen to roll this out to staff too.”

You can find out more about Ecosia and make the switch here.

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