Earth Day on 22 April is an opportunity to raise awareness of how essential it is that we preserve our planet and to share best practices. This year, the theme is ‘Invest In Our Planet’, something that we aim to do every day.
Our environmental, social and governance (ESG) policy ensures that we act responsibly in all areas of our work, delivering positive impact across these key pillar areas:
1. Our business
2. Our people
3. Our environment
4. Our community
Though we bring all aspects of ESG into each of these areas, Earth Day is an opportunity to celebrate our environmental efforts in particular. Every day, our teams are investing time and resources into making sure that what we do is sustainable for the long term.
Earlier this year, we achieved the Planet Mark Business Certification for the second year in a row. This certification cements our commitment to reducing our impact on society and acknowledges the continuous progress we are making. One highlight of the recent assessment is a total carbon reduction of 13%, ahead of our goal of 5%. In March of this year, we also measured our Scope 3 emissions. By setting a baseline measurement, we have paved the way for a reduction strategy taking us a step closer to achieving net zero.
Via Planet Mark, we have committed to nine of the UN’s sustainable development goals. These include goals related to clean water and sanitation, affordable and clean energy and creating sustainable cities and communities. These universal goals help us to invest in all aspects of our planet, to create better places.
To make sure that people focus on these goals across the business, we have created our Sustainability and Wellbeing Champions group. This team comprises people from all our divisions and geographies who are tasked with investing their time and resources into our environmental projects.
We can only reach our goals, such as our commitment to be net zero by 2030, if all our people are on board. Our skilled and committed teams are what makes the difference at Lambert Smith Hampton.
Our ESG team is currently carrying out a series of roadshows across the UK. The aim is to make sure that all our teams are climate literate; that they understand our goals, the UK’s wider goals and what we all need to do to get there. We want to make sure everyone is educated about the tools we have available such as technologies and certification schemes. By doing so, we can make sure that we deliver the best service to clients and help create and work towards their sustainability priorities.
Whenever a colleague reaches an important employment milestone, such as a promotion, qualification or significant tenure point, we plant a tree in association with the National Forest. This practice further illustrates how we link our own success with our impact on the environment.
As we work with many clients across the UK and Ireland, we have an opportunity to affect the impact on the environment of many properties and places. Our ESG team works closely with our clients to help them reduce carbon emissions and waste, and to find other ways to operate sustainably.
Biodiversity is one element of sustainability that we are keen to champion and we have established several initiatives. One of these is the installation of beehives at Here + Now in Thames Valley Park. The honey collected will be available to occupiers to buy as well as used by the building’s café.
Educating occupiers at Here + Now, Thames Valley Park
This project has provided the perfect opportunity to educate occupiers on how the beehive works and the life cycle of the bee, with the park’s beekeeper even providing information about bee keeping courses locally, which have proved very popular. Overall, through this project, biodiversity will be significantly improved.
We know our people are keen to get involved, which is why we are launching a new Company Volunteering Policy, as part of our Corporate Citizenship focus. This will give all employees the ability to commit two days a year to volunteer how they wish to. We have a partnership with Cancer Research UK providing opportunities for volunteering, while other people will choose to volunteer at a charity close to their heart such as those focused on their local environment.
Litter picking in Shrewsbury
In 2022 at Here + Now, our property management and leasing team joined a tree planting day. Overall, they planted more than 200 trees, bushes and bee-loving plants. We supported another tree planting day on Canvey Island in support of the Essex Forest Initiative, held by Mitie, our partner at Essex County Council. In Shrewsbury, our residential property management team worked with the town council to spend two days picking litter.
Tree planting in support of the Essex Forest Initiative
While we take the opportunity on Earth Day to celebrate our successes and the great work of our teams, we know we have a long way to go. We have many plans for the coming year and look forward to working with our clients on more environmental projects.
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