Our waste strategy covers the disposal of office waste whilst moving towards closing the loop through circular economy thinking.
To send less than 10% of our waste to landfill
In 2016, around 11% of our total waste was sent to landfill, with the remainder mostly recycled (65%) or sent to waste to energy schemes (24%). Since 2014 we have reduced the amount of waste we send to landfill by 12% and reduced the total volume of waste we generate by over 8%.
To ensure we minimise and manage our waste responsibly, we have developed a comprehensive waste management strategy.
Working with our facilities teams, we installed central waste recycling points in all of our offices, including food waste bins where possible. In addition, we use targeted communications around our offices to engage our employees and inspire behaviour change in their approach to recycling.
During office refurbishments, we consider the disposal of old office furniture and equipment, looking for creative ways to extend their lifespan. For example, this has included donating furniture and IT equipment to local universities. On some sites we are also able to re-purpose old IT equipment and e-waste in order to donate to local charitable causes.
However, the most efficient way of reducing our impacts from waste disposal is to not generate waste in the first place. We’re starting to implement “circular economy” thinking to look at how we can maintain products and materials in a positive development cycle.
- Across our offices, the provision of reusable mugs and water glasses or bottles has significantly reduced the use of disposable cups;
- Follow-me-printing and double-sided printer settings in the UK have significantly reduced the amount of paper printed;
- The provision of energy efficient hand dryers has avoided the need for paper towels; and
- By working with suppliers we have been able to minimize the packaging on some of the goods we buy.
Also the development and launch of our new supplier assessment tool during 2016 has enabled us to better identify and engage with suppliers who have strong circular economy principles.