How to go GREEN

Charterhouse Voice and Data (CVD) is an information and communication solutions integrator, and an industry trailblazer in going green. The company has an environmental policy in place, which is consistent with ISO14001 principles. It is also in its second year of being a CarbonNeutral company.

However, the business feels that it is essential to do more than make vague policy statements; policies are too philosophical to have any real bite, said Campbell Williams, marketing director at Charterhouse. He explained: “They’re based on what you will attempt to do, not what you actually are doing. A green policy is based on beliefs, when what are needed is tangible and measurable actions. For this reason, we also actively publicise the steps we’ve taken to improve our sustainability, whilst helping our clients to do likewise, in addition to the annual auditing process that’s part of being CarbonNeutral.”

Examples of steps taken in the last 12 months at Chaterhouse to reduce its environmental impact include: increasing use of teleworking to reduce commuting footprint; introduction of cycle-to-work schemes for employees (including tax breaks for cycle purchase); introduction of ‘walking engineers’ in Central London; replacement of company car allowances with the provision to Zone 1 to 5 travelcards to encourage or mandate use of public transport; and moving from hardcopy invoices and billing to softcopy bills, delivered by email or online.

Currently live projects include: the evaluation of heating and cooling systems to replace with more energy efficient models; evaluation of lighting systems to replace with more energy efficient models; moving from hardcopy newsletters to email newsletters; introduction of print and copy output measurement tools to monitor paper consumption; replacement of necessary company vehicles with congestion charge exempt vehicles, such as those with the lowest CO2 output.

Ed says: Now it’s your turn.