The Post Office recognises its environmental responsibilities and is committed to minimising our adverse environmental impact by means of a continuous improvement process.
We embrace environmental considerations in the business management process and decision making throughout the organisation.
Our targets for 2016-17:
- 3% reduction in building energy use
- 3% reduction in CO2 from vehicle fuel
- 3% reduction in water use
- 70% of all waste generated to be recycled.
All business projects and supplier contracts are reviewed for environmental impacts and recommendations made to positively influence them so that they make use, whenever possible, of sustainable raw materials and examine responsible end-of-life considerations.
A large percentage of Post Office buildings now have low-energy lighting, low-water usage utilities, and all fixtures and fittings are now obtained, wherever possible, from sustainable sources or from materials that can easily be reused or recycled.
The Post Office is continually looking at technological advances and new materials to reduce the weight of our vehicles so they use less fuel. A new concept vehicle went on trial in 2014-15. This vehicle utilises telemetry systems, which will enable us to improve overall fuel efficiency. Our aim is that this vehicle will become our flagship for the future, further supporting our environmental aspirations.
Most of our buildings are now participating in the Dry Mixed Recycling scheme where everything that can be recycled is now segregated into separate bins or bags. This is a key initiative to reduce dependence of the Post Office on sending waste to landfill, something that is both expensive and environmentally unsustainable. In addition to this, 100% of all our confidential waste is now shredded, pulped and sent to manufacture recycled paper. The Post Office measures and looks to reduce the amount of packaging that is produced and the quantity of electrical and electronic equipment that will end up in waste streams once they have reached the end of their useful life. To assist the Post Office in meeting these obligations, we have arrangements with Biffa, our prime waste contractor and Valpak, who specialise in the treatment of electrical waste.
We actively look for opportunities to ensure that all of the paper we use is from sources accredited by the Forest Stewardship Council and aim to advertise this fact by including the FSC logo on all of our point-of-sale literature. Currently, some 90% of all the paper we buy is from FSC accredited “mixed” sources. This means that the pulp used has come from either well managed forests, controlled sources or from recycled wood or fibres. In addition, we have also reduced the amount of packaging associated with our retail sales by some 44%.