Sustainability & Environmental Policy
We aim to be a role model for sustainable business, with a commitment to continual improvement. We look to be recognised in the market place as being environmentally conscious, by clearly demonstrating the actions we take and being in the vanguard of sustainable practices.
We recognise the vital importance of conducting our operations in a manner consistent with the principles of sustainable business, and specifically, in ways which minimise impacts on the natural environment. Whilst, as an office-based service organisation these impacts are relatively minor, we operate with full awareness of our impacts in the following ways:
Greenhouse gas emissions, and other air pollutant emissions, from the use of fossil fuel sourced electricity for our office, and from the use of liquid fossil fuels for our transport requirements;
Production of waste in our office; and
Indirectly, the environmental impact of our suppliers delivering products and services to us.
We are committed to continually improve our environmental performance and minimise pollution through the actions listed below. We believe that these commitments make good business sense, as well as reducing our impacts on the environment.
Complying with relevant environmental legislation, statutory regulations and other relevant requirements;
Making environmental performance a selection criteria for suppliers and encouraging key suppliers to do the same;
Implementing an environmental management system that is appropriate for an office-based business, taking into account the requirements of ISO14001;
Setting realistic objectives and targets for each of our most significant environmental impacts, including our carbon footprint;
Minimising our energy consumption and encouraging the use of less polluting forms of transport whenever possible;
Minimising the amount of waste produced through re-use, reduction, and recycling;
Training all employees on environmental issues;
Encouraging our employees to participate in activities which improve our local environment and community;
Communicating our environmental policy to employees, and other stakeholders and working with them to identify areas for environmental improvement;
Regularly reviewing our environmental management systems; and
Publicly reporting on our environmental performance.
For more information on our carbon reduction targets or to view our emissions reporting, visit our profile page on the Toitū Envirocare website or click here to see a summary of our CEMARS certification for 2017/2018.
sustainable procurement policy
Our vision is to be a role model for sustainable business for the business sector, with a commitment to continual improvement in the way we address environmental and sustainable development issues. We look to be recognised in the market place as being environmentally conscious, by clearly demonstrating the actions we take and being in the vanguard of sustainable practices.
One of our key focus areas is the environmental and ethical credentials of the products and services we buy, and of the suppliers of those products and services.
As a small office-based service organisation, we purchase relatively low volumes of products and services, and so have a relatively low impact.
We make the following purchases on a frequent and/or regular basis:
Office paper supplies
Cleaning and toilet supplies
Coffee and milk
Fuel for company vehicles
Office cleaning services
Air travel services
In addition, we make occasional purchases of many items, including ICT equipment, kitchen appliances, office furniture, kitchenware, and company vehicle(s).
Our small size and relatively low impact is not a valid reason for not taking action in this area. We make several general and specific commitments.
For all high volume supplies, and significant purchases, we will seek to identify products and services that have a reduced effect on human health and the environment when compared with competing products and services serving the same purpose, and of the same quality.
In practice, this means seeking products that have reduced environmental and human health impact because of what they are made from, how and where they are made, how they are transported, their durability, their in-use efficiency, and how they can be re-used or recycled.
Of prime concern will be whether the environmental credentials, or claims, of a supplier, product, or service, have been checked by a suitably authoritative third party, or have been accredited under a recognised independent accreditation scheme.
In making decisions, we will also balance the environmental credentials with performance/quality and financial cost. When considering cost, we will consider lifetime costs when appropriate for the product.
We will regularly review our existing contracted suppliers against our procurement policy. Where we find limitations in their performance against our preferences (as documented in this policy), we will initially engage with them to make them aware of the issues, and provide them with an opportunity to meet our expectations. If there is no change after an agreed period of time, then we will seek an alternative supplier. This approach is ethical and provides us with an opportunity to promote an awareness of sustainable practices amongst a wider group of businesses.
We will give preference to suppliers and service providers that:
Have an environmental management system which has been accredited with ISO14001 or Toitū Envirocare
Have a published environmental policy which is based on their impacts and has senior management support
Have measured and reported on their main environmental impacts (e.g. energy audits, waste audits, carbon footprint), preferably including independent verification
Can demonstrate policies, plans and practices which seek to meaningfully reduce their main environmental impacts
We will give preference to products and services that:
Have been certified by a recognised independent accreditation scheme, or rating scheme, the main ones being:
- Non-product type specific – ISO 14024/14025, ISO14044, EnviroChoice (www.enviro_choice.org.nz), PAS 2050
- Water using equipment – Minimum 4-star water efficiency rating
- Coffee – Fairtrade
- Vehicles – Minimum 4-star fuel efficiency rating (www.rightcar.govt.nz)
- Organic produce – BioGro (www.biogro.co.nz) reused
Have been designed to minimise lifecycle impacts in energy use, water use, and virgin resource use, and will seek evidence to justify any claims
Have been manufactured without the use of materials which are, or may be, carcinogenic, and which have no, or low levels of, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and will seek evidence to justify any claims
Have been designed so that the product and its components can be easily re-used or recycled, and/or are covered by a product take-back scheme, and will seek evidence to justify any claims