This policy applies to all Growth Company employees, associates, secondees, agency staff and third parties who undertake activity for and on behalf of GC. It applies to the goods and services we procure, our direct operations and the services we provide to our customers. GC operates within a suite of interdependent policies and their procedures, which are implemented collectively in order to deliver the objectives of the Environmental Policy.
To provide an effective framework for realising GC’s commitment to protecting and where possible enhancing the environment by reducing the Group’s environmental impacts, preventing pollution, mitigating and adapting to climate change and a low carbon future.
All employees including associates, secondees, agency staff and third parties are responsible for ensuring that this Policy is adhered to. In addition, those employees who procure goods and services should follow GC’s Procurement Policy including the requirement to include social value considerations which include environmental issues. As referenced some activities within the scope of this Policy are covered by additional dedicated policies and procedures to ensure that the objectives of this Policy are delivered.
GC is a group of companies that work in partnership with others to enable growth, create jobs and improve the lives of residents and local communities. The Group delivers activities across six service areas: Strategy & Research, Business Support & Finance, Skills, Employment, Marketing and Organisation Development Services. With over 1,000 employees across 40 sites, the Group recognises that its activities impact the environment in a number of ways, principally through our use of:
- in the buildings we occupy
- business travel
- information communication technology hardware (ICT)
In recognising this, GC is committed to protecting the environment and continually improving its environmental performance by:
- ensuring compliance with all relevant legislation and standards, and the expectations of our customers and other key stakeholders
- ensuring our systems and procedures prevent pollution
- ensuring our suppliers are able and are encouraged to support our environmental commitments
- ensuring we continually review how we can make improvements to our environmental performance
Specifically, we will:
- reduce energy consumption across our estate through staff awareness and improved controls
- reduce business travel miles through better journey planning
- reduce paper consumption through staff awareness and increased use of electronic communication and data storage
- rationalise our use of ICT hardware and ensure that all waste electrical & electronic equipment is reused or recycled where possible
In order for GC to realise these commitments, environmental performance is driven by the monthly Cost Review Group, which is chaired by the Chief Operating Officer, and reports into GC Senior Management Team. The Cost Review Group works to reduce these key environmental impacts by addressing the findings:
- from our energy audit, which quantified our carbon emissions, and the actions needed to reduce them
- from our travel audit, which analysed our grey fleet travel patterns and emissions
- from paper audit, which analysed usage by individual, department and company and associated impacts from photocopying
In addition, there are specific policies that address the individual environmental impacts:
- from our use of ICT hardware via a Disposal Policy, which covers data security and recycling
- from our business mileage via a Staff Expenses Policy, which encourages journey planning and alternative modes of transport
- from our company cars, the Policy for which limits CO2 emissions to 120g/km
- from our suppliers through our adoption of the Greater Manchester Sustainable Procurement Framework
To realise our environmental objectives GC both recognises the need for and is committed to communicating our environmental objectives to our suppliers, employees, customers and wider stakeholders. This is achieved via our procurement processes, and our existing communication channels to employees including the business plan, intranet, Cost Review Group, newsletters, team briefings and the staff induction processes.
This policy and the actions arising from it will be annually reviewed as part of the business planning process which involves GC's senior leadership and management teams, the Cost Review Group, with final approval via the GC Board.