Net zero carbon
We’re committed to reducing our impact on the environment and have achieved our 2021 targets of being Carbon Neutral for Scope 1 and claiming Net Zero merits for Scope 2 emissions. We will work towards achieving Net Zero for Scope 3 upstream emissions by 2030 and we have an ambition to be entirely Net Zero by 2040 across Scopes 1, 2 and 3.
By 2024 we aim to have set a Science Based Target in line with best practice in this area.
We will continue to look at ways to reduce our demand for energy, through efficiency projects and aligning our capital expenditure to 1.5° pathway. In 2021 we transitioned to 100% renewable energy by procuring Energy Attributable Certificates (EACs) also known as Renewable Energy Certificates to remove our carbon emissions from our Scope 2 activities.
We will only procure FSC certified paper for use within the Society and for communicating to members. Our in-house print facility is, and will continue to be, accredited with the FSC Chain of Custody certification; ensuring all the paper we use is sourced responsibly, helping to protect forests, wildlife and communities. We will also continue to be part of the Forest Carbon Scheme to ensure new trees are planted to absorb carbon dioxide from the air, to make up for the environmental impact of the paper we use.
We will seek out new ways of working with our members digitally to reduce our paper consumption, by continuing to ask members to provide their email information and look at what other communications we can send to them digitally rather than in hard copy.
Waste reduction and disposal
We are committed to sending zero waste to landfill by disposing of waste in a in a legally compliant and environmentally responsible way. We will continue to reduce the amount of waste we produce, by avoiding, re-using and recycling wherever possible.
We are committed to transition our company fleet to 100% electric vehicles by 2030. We will continue to use electric vans for deliveries to head offices, and will continue to roll out electric vehicle charging points at our office sites.
We will work with members to encourage reductions in negative environmental impact by educating our customer base on the issue of climate change and how it impacts housing. Providing simple secured lending solutions to encourage carbon reduction, reward proactive change by our members and collaborate with other key stakeholders to promote the decarbonisation agenda.
We will continue to promote sustainability, environmental awareness and engagement across the Society. We will educate our colleagues through delivering best practice examples whilst at work and at home. Continue to empower our Environmental Advocates to take action against climate change and provide local support; such as running local awareness campaigns aligned to our sustainability strategy. To enable all colleagues to develop skills, knowledge and values that promote and encourage behaviour in support of a sustainable environment.
Our suppliers and contractors
We will engage with suppliers and contractors to ensure that goods and services meet the Society’s expectations in terms of environmental standards and work with them to deliver change. We will continue to partner with a third party to undertake sustainability assessments for both existing suppliers and new sourcing activities. We are committed to achieving ISO 20400, the globally recognised standard for sustainable procurement, by 2023.
Our influence on society
We will act in an environmentally responsible manner, meeting relevant UK and European legislative and regulatory requirements. We will engage with regulators and Government on climate change matters, publicly disclose our climate strategy positions and work with partners to deliver change. We will deliver these objectives through our responsibilities as a signatory of the UN Principles of Responsible Banking and by formulating goals and targets under the auspices of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
We will commit to continuous improvement of our environmental management by annually reporting of our progress, seeking external third party assurance, achieving and maintaining ISO 14064-1 accreditation against our GHG emissions data, and aligning to external reporting frameworks.
We will continue to develop our capabilities to measure, report and mitigate the risks we face arising from climate change.
The Board has overall accountability for the management of all risks and opportunities relating to climate change as well as our broader approach to sustainability. The Board Risk Committee and Board Audit Committee review our climate related risks and climate reporting respectively.
This policy will be reviewed annually to ensure that it is up-to-date and to measure the Society’s compliance with it.
Download our 2021 environment report