24 September 2020
T. L. Battle
By email: [FYI request #13525 email]
Dear Mr Battle,
I am writing in regard to your official information request dated 15 August 2020 seeking information
related to the Uniflats and the Sustainability Neighbourhood, emissions assessments and carbon
reduction, and the School Strike for Climate protests in 2019. As per my communication of 11
September 2020, an extension of the timeframe to respond to this request was advised on 1
Having assessed your request, it is formally refused pursuant to section 18(f) of the Official
Information Act, on the grounds that to fully respond both to the overall request, or to its individual
components, would require extensive and impracticable col ation and research. I note your right to
seek a review of this decision via complaint to an Ombudsman.
Despite this, in scoping your request we have been able to identify relevant information which may
be of assistance to you, which I provide below. I also note that this may allow you to subsequently
make more focused requests on any of these topics, which we may be able to respond to more
Having liaised with relevant staff, the University does not expect to hold any documentation relating
to other options for a sustainability neighbourhood, or consideration of rent subsidies or minimum
work hours. None of these things were formal y considered. This is a scheme that has volunteering
at the heart of its ethos and seeks to attract students committed to this initiative for its own sake.
Similarly, the University has not planned nor carried out formal analysis of how the scheme would
affect the wellbeing of current residents in the area designated for the sustainability neighbourhood.
Emissions assessment and carbon reduction plan
The University is due to publically release its Greenhouse Inventory shortly, which will provide a
summary of the work the University of Otago is undertaking in the measurement of emissions. If
you would like a copy of this document once it is ready, please do not hesitate to contact
Sustainability at Otago
at [email address].
Regarding the University’s plans to reduce its carbon footprint, a Carbon Zero programme is up to
business case development stage and will progress in 2021. Currently there is no formal proposal
which could be considered for release.
School Strike for Climate Protest in 2019
As advised above, a search for all documentation requested on this matter across the University is
impracticable. However, I have sought documentation relating to (i) your particular interest in
supporting the Climate Strike, and (ii) analysis of risks from supporting the Climate
Strike. For this, I have focused on the Vice-Chancellor and the Vice-Chancel or’s Advisory Group
which comprises the University’s senior leadership team. Having done so, I can confirm I have
identified no correspondence or documentation held by this group recommending against
supporting the Climate Strike, nor any analysis of risks from supporting the Strike.
I trust this information is helpful. Should you have further requests on specific aspects of these
matters, please feel free to email [University of Otago request email]
Manager, Policy and Compliance, Office of the Registrar