Last week, we achieved the ISO 14001:2015 certification, a globally recognised standard demonstrating our compliance with the environmental management system and also our desire to do the right thing for the planet. Throughout the application process we looked into how we do things at 299 and how we can make a difference other than pinning the framed certificate on a wall.
You already know that we are good at what we do – we design great office lighting schemes, engineer the beautiful visions of architects and with a great care, we turn their design concept into reality. But being a part of the construction industry, we recognise that we also have a responsibility in how we behave as a business. And this responsibility presents us with a great opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to our planet- as a business and as individuals.
Construction and fit out industry are some of the largest contributors of pollution- air pollution, drinking water pollution and landfill waste, not to mention noise and light pollution.
With achieving the globally recognised standard and adding the new ISO 14001:2015 logo to our website, we want to demonstrate our commitment to protect the environment and build trust with customers.
Our carbon reduction plan.
Planting trees is one of the best ways of fighting climate change, as the trees not only take the carbon out of the air, but also provide habitat for plants, birds and animals. This year, we triple offset our scope making sure that we also cover some of the carbon emissions of our supply chain. We are committing to plant 3 x as many trees every year as we need to be carbon negative.
We are proud to announce our partnership with Creating Tomorrow’s Forest.
With their help, we are going to plant 100 trees before the end of 2020 in Charlotte’s Wood, a site in the Somerset Levels. We chose this initiative because it is local to us and we would like to proactively support the project. Our new native woodland will create a diverse water meadow and a habitat for wildlife.
Buy cheap buy twice
Our products are made to last. We are aware that there are cheaper products on the market, but by buying cheap products which then have to be replaced as they inevitably don’t perform as they should do or don’t look great in the first place, you are contributing to the waste problem produced by the construction industry. Think twice before you choose the cheapest quote for your project.
Repack and reuse
With around 2.4 million tonnes of packaging waste generated in the UK alone per year, packaging contributes to the problem we all have on our hands. We are committing to reuse palettes and any packaging in order to reduce waste. We are also putting pressure on our supply chain to use environmental friendly packaging.
More sustainable Office life
First of all, we will look into reducing our electrical waste by assessing the obvious culprits like the kettle and any appliances we use. Practising what we preach, our office lighting is using the latest LED technology and is equipped with movement sensors and dimming, so this is where we have been ahead of the game. We also let our team members use product samples in their homes, helping them out to improve their homes and lower their energy use and save on electricity bills.
New ways of commuting.
During the lockdown, more of our team started cycling to the office. This is proving to be a very popular choice of transport and we encourage our team members to cycle to the office be it by showing new cyclists the best routes to cycle on, giving them tips on how to look after their bikes, or how to dress appropriately for the ever so challenging British weather. We will also be looking to update our car fleet with electric vehicles in the near future.
Going even more paperless
We at 299 are tech savvy and there is hardly any paper to be seen in the office. But there are situations where we will inevitably have to use paper, so we are committing to re-use paper for scribbling the notes on and look into sourcing recycled paper for our plotter.
We try to increase the ecological awareness through tips on what we can improve outside of work by growing our own food, choosing fashion responsibly and supporting local food producers where possible.
By doing all this and more, we are trying to create a low waste culture in the company that hopefully goes beyond the time spent at work.
It’s the start of the environmental journey for 299 Lighting and we know that we can always do more. Together, we are learning as we go, inspired by other great businesses leading the way. We are committing to do more and that is what counts.
Find out what some of our team had to say: