In line with Earth Day every year, we conduct a review of our carbon footprint over the previous 12 months to evaluate how we can further reduce our emissions with the eventual goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2030.
Some of the actions we took last year include:
- Printing supplies: In 2022 we implemented specific changes to how our printers work and rolled out education for employees about the impact of printing. Added to the move from printed day plans and diaries to digital versions a year earlier, we’ve reduced paper usage by 88% over the last two years.
- Waste: We actively encourage our employees to recycle and over the last year, encouraged our office landlords to ensure there are ample opportunities to recycle around each of our offices.
- Energy: Last year we began the transition to energy-saving lightbulbs and implemented IT solutions to ensure all computers, projectors, TVs, and other such pieces of equipment are automatically switched off when not in use. We also ran educational campaigns to educate employees about turning lights off when they are not needed.
Despite these changes, we can see there is still more work to be done and inevitably as our business grows, so does our carbon footprint.
Whilst the changes we’ve made have successfully reduced our energy and supplies usage and our waste emissions to fewer than 43 tonnes a year, our biggest challenge will be related to travel.
Currently, we average around 80-90 flights a year due to travel for business purposes such as client meetings, employee incentives and office visits, which equates to around 33 tonnes of carbon.
We are putting in place provisions for this year to reduce the number of flights by approximately 50%, by cutting back on unnecessary trips and using greener modes of transport.
This includes train travel and better use of our company car fleet for short to mid-distance trips. While the latter option still produces emissions, it is greener than commercial flights and we are looking to increase the proportion of electric cars we own to increase that impact.
At the end of the year, we will be reviewing our footprint once again after making these emission reductions, and then reviewing carbon offset options to achieve neutrality.
However, one major challenge with this is identifying credits that achieve the aims of being effective, additional, permanent and verified. There has been much-reported controversy around the credibility of carbon offsets and we want to ensure we are investing in options that have a real impact.