Hello and welcome to our website!
SFSA stands for Students for Sustainability Amsterdam and, as our name suggests, we are a student organization that promotes sustainability among students, at universities, and at schools.
We organize events such as lectures, workshops or Greendocs (green documentaries with speakers who elaborate on the subject). Are you curious about our upcoming events? Be sure to check our Facebook Page and Instagram regularly or become a member to make sure you stay updated on the latest news (only possible for students).
The history of SFSA:
Once upon a time, student council member Gijs van der Poel heard a crazy story: some econometrics student was trying to build an energy neutral study room. Right now, you might think that that’s not a very big deal, but we’re talking 2008 ladies and gentlemen: solar panels had just been invented!
Gijs’ interest was sparked, and he reached out to the crazy econometrics student Ewoud de Kok. Together, they build a computer hall with a couple of hundred computers and took all precautions to reduce the energy-use as much as possible. The computers would be turned on at the beginning of the morning and off at night. This resulted in such an energy consumption that the heat produced by the computers required external cooling of the study room 365 days a year. Sleep mode was implemented for when a computer wasn’t used, and lighting was replaced by energy efficient lighting. The reduction was enormous and the savings on energy costs could be used to put solar panels on top of the room: the CO2 neutral study room was born.
With this energy neutral study room, more interest in sustainability topics arose, and within the student council, a new committee was founded: the sustainability committee. Together with Just Dengerink (student council member and involved in the study room project), Gijs formed the first board of this committee.
Since this were the early years of sustainability and everything in this sector was different, the committee received a lot of money and support to experiment with the craziest (and coolest!) ideas. Greendocs was introduced, where politicians and leaders of industry where questioned regarding their impact, facility services started taking sustainability into their activities, conferences where organised, the housing plans where grilled and made more sustainable, and the lessons learned from the study room where implemented at other universities across the country. The committee teamed up with the HvA to become even more effective in challenging the status quo.
After four years, in 2012, the fourth board made an appointment with a notary to turn the committee into an official students association, and Students For Sustainability Amsterdam was born.
Since then, a lot has changed. Most internal affairs concerning sustainability within the UvA are now handled by the Green Office, while SFSA is focussing more on educating students by organising events.