Chess pass with flying ‘green’ colours

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Chess Telecom has successfully maintained its accreditation to ISO 14001, the international standard for Environmental Management for the third year running. Chess sailed through an external audit and as in previous audits, the stirling work of its Green Team was highlighted in the auditor’s final report.

The Green Team is made up of eco-ambassadors, from different areas of the business who find practical ways to minimise environmental impact and drive change to become carbon neutral. Assessor, Alan Jackson, sat with Green Team members and discussed a possible new initiative based on paper usage that will have a cost saving as well as environmental benefit. Chess now aims to reduce this total figure of paper usage by 20% in the next 12 months, through raising awareness and carrying out departmental and waste management audits.

Chess has implemented numerous green initiatives over the last four years, including the introduction of web billing in 2007 which has saved £122,000 in paper so far. Continuous commitment to recycling has reduced waste by 50% and has to date resulted in over 5.5 tonnes of paper, cardboard and cans being recycled. The more recent addition of glass and plastic recycling measures will see further improvement.

Chess also has switched to a green energy supplier, ensures printers automatically print double-sided, participates in the government led Bike-To-Work scheme, has developed and implemented video conferencing software, (introducing webinars and conference calls where appropriate to reduce unnecessary travel) as well as launching a customer carbon offsetting scheme to celebrate HRH Prince of Wales’ May Day Summit 2009. To kick start the launch, Chess offset 61 tonnes of carbon and has given all Chess people the opportunity to choose a project to offset their own carbon against.

Anne Binnie, HR Director & Head of the Green Team, said: “Chess is a great example of a company which is extremely forward thinking in its approach to resource efficiency. To have achieved this accreditation for a third year running is a tremendous achievement for everyone at Chess.”

”We all have a duty to operate our businesses in a sustainable manner within ecological means.” added David Pollock, Chief Executive. “People talk about their concerns around the ‘business case’ for implementing more environmentally friendly practices. In the telecoms industry, we can take the lead on how we look after and preserve the planet. We do this by firstly looking at ourselves and what we can do on a local level, within our own businesses.”