Universiteit Leiden

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We need drinking water for making tea and coffee, but not for flushing the toilet. By reducing the consumption of clean water, Leiden University is helping to minimise the environmental impact.

Water conservation

Leiden University uses around 125,000 m3 water a year. In terms of the number of students, that works out at roughly 5 m3 per student per year. In fact, the average water consumption per student has decreased by almost 30 per cent over the past four years, and is expected to decrease even further as a result of the water-saving technologies being applied in the construction of the new  Science Campus.


When any new buildings or large-scale renovations are planned, the University takes measures to conserve water. To counter the use of environmentally polluting, prepackaged mineral water, including water coolers, the University will install taps where water can easily be obtained. Join-the-Pipe taps will also be made available at a number of locations. Join the Pipe encourages people to drink tap water in orde to make the distributrion of drinking water as fair as possible throughout the world. 

Current status

Water-saving techniqaues have been applied at the Saience Campus. There is, for example, improved metering consumption, which shows up up any differences at an earlier stage. There are also water-saving taps and whitegoods. Rain water is also filtered in the ground.

The Faculties of Humanities, Archaeology and Science have cancelled their contract for water coolers. The renovation of the P.J. Veth building also includes the installation of water-saving toilets and taps.  Appropriate taps and washbasins will be installed to allow staff and students to fill their own water bottles and wash coffee mugs.  Water coolers have now largely disappeared from University buildings. The first join-the-pipe project has been installed in the P.J. Veth building. 

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