At ACEVO, we want to reduce our carbon emissions on travel as much as we can. We will endeavour to use trains instead of planes, work from home to reduce travel if it is practical and appeals to staff, and encourage digital meetings. Our trustees have agreed to attend events in their local areas rather than travelling large distances, and we will support them to use Skype if they need to.
Given that we hold an office space and unavoidably need to travel to member events, we have decided to offset one tonne per month of carbon via the Gold Standard Community Projects. Although we are aware that offsetting isn’t the long term answer, we want to provide some support as we try and reduce our emissions and become more energy-efficient.
We need to keep better track of our printing and so we will review print volumes on the first of every month. We aim to reduce our printing levels by 40-50% by January 2020. At this date, we will review our achievement against this target and where the challenges were, and make new, hopefully more ambitious targets.
We need to print materials for events, but we would also like members to use digital copies if they can, and make their notes in notebooks or digitally rather than on printed sheets provided by ACEVO. We will trial the option to request printed agendas, delegate lists and other papers at some of our events in order to encourage wider digital usage. This could make a huge difference to our printing volumes, but we want to be sure going paperless works for our members.
We use recycled paper, and are switching to a supplier of sustainably-sourced office stationery.
ACEVO’s waste disposal is managed by First Mile, who has been supporting us to recycle as well as we can in the office. First Mile has provided waste audits examining the levels of contamination in our waste and where we can improve, as well as workshops for the staff team on how to recycle well and improve our recycling rate. At the moment our recycling rate is at 62%; we hope to increase it to at least 65% by Spring 2020, and will also be introducing additional waste bins to separate our waste more efficiently.
In the office, we have moved to using Clipper teabags to ensure tea waste can be fully composted. We are bulk buying and using providers which use cardboard or glass packaging, rather than single use plastic.
Many of our events are catered, and we will explore the possibility of meat-free events, potentially with an option for members to choose meat if they would like it. We will also ask caterers whether they use single use plastic in packaging or presenting their food, and seek alternatives wherever possible.
As a tenant in an office block managed by a building services provider, we currently have little data on our energy provider and level of usage. We are holding staff recycling workshops with our recycling provider, First Mile, but as a team understand that reduction is the best solution.
When we seek new office spaces, we will include environmental impact in our search criteria. We commit to asking questions about energy providers, shredding policies and cleaning products before the start of any tenancy, and taking these into consideration alongside our other criteria.