Sunday, 31 May 2009

The Power Issues

Lots happened in May, not the least of which was WE FINALISED THE EP AND LAUNCHED IT LIKE A (small, green, non-polluting) ROCKET!

Check out the write-up of the launch event here

And Audrey's thank you letter here

So, with those exciting developments, it's surprising that we've had time to make more changes around here, but we have!

Firstly, Steve introduced a moratorium on the purchasing of ANY new electrical equipment

Secondly (with this first point in mind) we purchased some hand shredders to replace our old electrical one. Hours of fun! We also need the shredded paper for our compost which is rather wet at the moment.

Thirdly, Tumble sorted out the lighting for the bike park area so it's on a sensor.

Fourthly (is that a word?) we got an additional water point on the mezzanine (so now we have 3) and made the decision to stop selling water from the cafe. All our water points are fitted with filters so now you can get a free glassful or buy one of the attractive, washable, re-usable castle-branded drink bottles to use at your leisure.

Thursday, 7 May 2009

The Environmental Policy - Issue 1 April 2009

1. Statement of Intent

Climate change is a real problem that is already affecting us. Resources are running out rapidly and the future economic landscape is increasingly uncertain.
We must put in place an effective Environmental Management Scheme and radically alter the way we operate to minimise our environmental impact and reduce our dependency on scarce resources.

High Performance Sports Ltd is committed to doing this because we believe that we are collectively responsible for the causes of climate change and that we can, and therefore must, take action. In doing so, we can inspire change in other people and companies to also reduce their impact.

Our aim is to make The Castle Climbing Centre a benchmark for environmental and economic sustainability and to demonstrate that there is a place for sport and commerce in a sustainable future without compromising financial success and high standards.

The purpose of this Environmental Policy statement is to provide structure and direction to our actions in reducing our environmental impact. The challenge is a complex and broad one and cannot be solved by a simple solution.

It is only possible to make the business sustainable by changing our practices. While it is not in our power nor is it appropriate to prescribe or prevent certain behaviours, some aspects of the Policy will be mandatory and become part of performance appraisals, enforced through our Disciplinary Procedures and incorporated in each employee’s terms of work here. In areas outside the scope of our influence we will include systems and processes designed to encourage the reduction of negative environmental impact in the lives of our staff and customers.

This is a position supported by the Board of Directors and the Core Management Team.

2. Scope

The Environmental Policy is mandatory for all staff working at The Castle. It covers all business that takes place on Castle grounds or in connection with The Castle. A breach of the Environmental Policy may lead to Disciplinary Proceedings as per The Castle’s Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures. All staff will be informed of the Environmental Policy and this will be taken as a part of their terms of work at The Castle.

3. Method

A. Environmental Audits

We will carry out environmental audits to assess our environmental impact on an annual basis. These audits will include but are not limited to:
· Inputs – supplies brought into the centre;
· Outputs – waste produced by the centre;
· Energy and Resources – use of electricity, gas and water;
· Processes – the environmental impact of our systems of work with special attention to cleaning and maintenance products and processes;

Although a separate audit may be carried out for the Café, if practical, it can be incorporated into the general centre audit.

One of the purposes of the audit will be to establish our Carbon Footprint as per the methodology recommended by The Carbon Trust (Appendix A).

B. Action Plans

From the findings of the audit we will formulate immediate, 1 year, and 3 year action plans with specific targets. Tasks will be assigned by agreement to staff members and will form part of their general performance appraisal for their work at The Castle.

C. Performance Monitoring and Reporting

Our performance will be communicated to staff and public through the publication of an annual Environmental Report. To achieve our goal of demonstrating the possibilities of sustainability in business we will, in addition, produce monthly Environmental Updates to both customers and staff.

D. Reviewing Policy and Targets

The final piece of our Environmental Management Scheme is a review of our policy and procedures. This will be undertaken annually in conjunction with the publication of the Environmental Report.

4. Targets

Our main purpose is to reduce our environmental impact by reducing the carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions that we are directly and indirectly responsible for. In addition, we want to have a positive influence on the actions of our customers, staff and other businesses to encourage them to reduce their contribution to climate change.

We will consider our Policy a success when we achieve the following:

· Develop and implement an Environmental Management Scheme with external accreditation;
· Become carbon neutral through minimising our emissions and genuinely offsetting what emissions we cannot eliminate;
· Source all of our electricity from renewable resources;
· Become Water Neutral by collecting and recycling water ourselves;
· Regulate the environment within the building (temperature, ventilation and lighting) with the least amount of energy;
· Reduce the environmental impact of transport associated with the business;
· Actively encourage our customers and staff to reduce their own environmental impacts through an awareness campaign;
· Source all of our supplies from companies with high environmental standards;
· Send zero waste to landfill; and
· Eliminate the use of toxic substances in our cleaning and maintenance processes.

We must do this without compromising the financial success of the company and the high standards that we have come to expect.

5. Inputs

A. Purchasing Code

When purchasing supplies, staff are obliged to take the following elements into consideration (in no particular order):
· Our need for the product;
· Suitability for our purposes;
· Cost;
· Materials and processes used in making the product;
· Transportation used to make and ship the product;
· Product packaging;
· Expected life span and end-of-life disposal possibilities; and
· Supplier environmental and ethical record.

B. Supplier Code of Conduct

We will notify our suppliers that we will now be looking at environmental impact when purchasing and that we encourage them to take the following steps: assessing their impact, formulating a policy, reporting on their progress. Those suppliers that achieve this will be our preferred suppliers.

C. Café supplies

In addition to the Purchasing Code, the Café will have additional considerations when purchasing and preparing food. Where possible, the café will use organic, sustainable, local produce. Food will be assembled on site where possible to limit packaging and waste.

D. Utilities

Our first priority will be to minimise the consumption of electricity, gas and water. Secondly we will source these in the most environmentally responsible manner.

6. Outputs

a) Waste Management Plan

Recycling and composting are mandatory for all staff and strongly encouraged for customers. We will provide adequate facilities for both recycling and composting. To keep track of performance we will monitor and report on our performance monthly as part of the Environmental Update.

Our Waste Management Plan will respect the following waste hierarchy:(
If we are not able to re-use the items ourselves we will invite outside organisations to re-use our waste unless there is a health and safety issue with the product being re-used.

b) Carbon Dioxide and other Greenhouse Gases

We will identify what emissions we are responsible (directly or indirectly) for and monitor our ‘carbon footprint’. We will accept responsibility for all activities connected with the operation of The Castle including our purchases, electricity and related activities such as climbing trips. Our aim, as stated above, is to be carbon neutral by 2015.

7. Outside Organisations

The Environmental Policy is applicable to all activities that happen in the building. To this extent organisations with activities that take place in the centre must be informed of the Policy and its implications for them. With regards to lessees and licensees we will include an environmental clause in our agreements. Where possible we will seek compliance with the policy by requiring them to engage in an Environmental Management Scheme of their own.