Here at NuServe, we are passionate about doing our bit to help save the planet, and are continually looking at how we can reduce our carbon footprint and deliver sustainable services. Through this ethos, we aim to ensure our customers can achieve their own environmental and social value aims too.
As a result of our tireless efforts, we were awarded the Planet Mark certification in 2021, much to the delight of everyone here at NuServe.
But what exactly does this certification involve, how did we achieve it, and what does this mean going forward?
What is the Planet Mark certification?
Planet Mark is an internationally recognised sustainability certification for all types of organisations. It acknowledges and supports the environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria that socially conscious businesses follow to contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). It was set up in 2013 in collaboration with the Eden Project, and has an overriding mission of building a sustainable, brighter future for the planet.
The Planet Mark award itself recognises a company’s outstanding achievement in implementing continuous sustainable improvements through its actions. This isn’t just another certificate for ticking boxes, but is regularly assessed with measurements and targets that have a true impact on the world around us and the environments and spaces where we work.
How did we achieve this certification?
To achieve the Planet Mark certification, you must pledge to measure and reduce your company’s footprint. As such, we measured and submitted our carbon and social data for analysis and checking, and were awarded certification due to our low total carbon footprint of 28.9 tonnes and a carbon footprint per employee of 0.2 tonnes. To put this into perspective, the average person alone has a carbon footprint of around 10 tonnes a year.
Among the ways we have reduced our carbon footprint include switching to renewable energy, using recycled paper, installing LED sensor lighting and managing waste more efficiently. In addition, our entire fleet will comprise electric vehicles by 2023.
How is the Planet Mark certification marked?
NuServe was marked on four main areas to achieve the Planet Mark certification:
You cannot change what you do not measure. Here at NuServe, we focus on assessing our carbon footprint and setting new targets to reduce it by.
We are proud to have achieved a carbon-neutral status, offsetting any emissions we produce through our operations with programmes and funding for carbon reduction. In fact, the actual measurements show that we produced negative emissions. Our targets for the next year are a further 5% reduction in overall carbon footprint.
To unlock our employees’ talents, knowledge, and passions, we have implemented a series of workshops and toolkits to help them engage with climate change, including:
- Basic communication and engagement workshops
- Enhanced sustainability workshops that help develop a three-year sustainability plan
- Kick-starter workshops to look at improvements that can be made for next year’s certification
There are also internal awards for engaged employees, which include tickets to visit the Eden Project – and yes, we will find the most economical and sustainable way to get there!
Communicating our efforts
It’s important that we don’t keep this award to ourselves, as it can help inspire others to make important changes. We therefore encourage those in the local communities we operate in to make a difference too, including our clients, business partners, and all stakeholders.
Providing social value
We strongly believe that to support and nurture the communities around us, we should give back and make the world a better place, one neighbour at a time. Our commitment to social value, where we shine, therefore includes direct engagement with our people. This involves community involvement and volunteering, direct donations, sustainable and local procurement plans, and measuring our local environmental impacts.
We also look at employing local staff and so better serving local economies. Overall, our social value for the past year has equated to over £4.6 million.
What does our Planet Mark certification mean going forward?
Safeguarding the planet
Urgent action is needed now to slow down human-caused climate change. Businesses like ours have an essential role to play in reducing carbon emissions, restoring climate stability and enabling eco-systems to thrive. To limit global warming to the 1.5°C temperature goal of the 2015 Paris Agreement, global greenhouse gas emissions must fall by 7.6% each year between 2020 and 2030.
This is a critical period, with scientists saying that to avoid the worst impacts of global warming, we must cut global carbon emissions by almost half by the end of the decade. We are in a race against time. According to the UN, it is a race we can win provided there are fundamental changes in all aspects of society, including how businesses operate.
While we are delighted to have received our Planet Mark certification, this is no time to rest on our laurels. We look forward to tackling more sustainability challenges in our business and engaging employees and wider stakeholders to use their knowledge and talent to create year-on-year progress in sustainability.
As a certified Planet Mark member, we are also contributing to protecting endangered rainforests to combat global warming and provide employment for local people. Every business that becomes certified via the programme protects an acre of rainforest via Planet Mark’s partnership with Cool Earth, a UK-based international NGO.
Through this relationship, we are helping to protect 151,149 acres of rainforest, which serves as a carbon sink for 9,192,043 tonnes of carbon.
How does our Planet Mark certification help you?
Working with NuServe and our Planet Mark certification, you have convenient access to a first-class, sustainable team of cleaning operatives, porters and handymen. These are carefully selected to meet your own sustainability targets and still maintain top-quality hygiene and cleanliness.
As a business, we are more than happy to share our achievements with you, and the best practices that we have learned along our journey that will only go to better serve you.