Posted: 06/12/19

Two new trees were planted in DCU this week as a result of the international Machine Translation (MT) Summit organised by the ADAPT Centre which took place last August.  The two Purple Beech trees were paid from the proceeds of the conference as part of the organisers bid to reduce the carbon footprint of the conference and attendees were told that they would replace trees that died a few years ago that were more than 200 years old.  The tree planting ceremony was led by DCU President Brian MacCraith and Deputy President Daire Keogh and took place outside Albert College in DCU's Glasnevin campus.

The MT Summit was held in The Helix in DCU last August and was chaired by Professor Andy Way of DCU and Deputy Director of the ADAPT Centre. 

"This really is the best thing you can do, these trees will be here for years taking in carbon emissions," Professor Way said. 

Last August's event was the largest conference on MT globally to date with approximately 350 researchers, translators and industry partners travelling from all over the world to attend. 

Conscious of the increasing risks to our climate and carbon footprint, the conference organisers implemented a number of measures at the time in a bid to make the conference as sustainable as possible. 

These measures included: 

  • No delegate bag – reduce waste
  • Full size programme replaced by a smaller “bradge” which doubles a name badge – reduce paper required
  • Accommodation – using the onsite accommodation in DCU to reduce transport costs
  • Promote walking and use of public transport
  • Increased recycling facilities at venue
  • Providing water points to refill bottles rather than providing plastic bottle of water

However, it was felt by conference organisers that the most significant and impactful action they could do was to plant two trees to reduce carbon footprint, thereby promoting how we can all do our bit to be more sustainable for this and other events in to the future. 

The trees were planted on campus by President MacCraith and Deputy President Keogh.  Speaking at the event, Professor Keogh said: "I often think trees can be like education, you just don't know what is going to grow from it. It's fantastic to be apart of something that will live on forever."

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