Close

Read Stories

Achieving carbonzero certification

Achieving carbonzero certification

Headquartered in Crawley, OCS is one of the world’s largest family-owned facilities management services companies. OCS employs over 4,000 employees across its New Zealand and Australia operations delivering sustainable facilities management services to thousands of customers.

OCS is a gold sponsor and longstanding member of the British New Zealand Business Association (BNZBA) and so the BNZBA was delighted when OCS recently became the first Australasian company of its type to receive carbonzero certification from Toitū Envirocare across both its New Zealand and Australia businesses. Toitū in Maori means enduring, protected and sustaining life and Toitū Envirocare is a New Zealand Government agency that helps businesses realise efficiencies, reduce their carbon footprint and be more sustainable. Its carbonzero certification is globally recognised and enables businesses to measure their greenhouse gas emissions accurately and implement strategies to manage, reduce and offset their impacts.

OCS New Zealand has worked since 2017 to achieve Toitū carbonreduce certification but in 2020 OCS decided to fast-track its plans by becoming carbon neutral in both New Zealand and Australia. OCS Australia New Zealand Managing Director, Gareth Marriott, says “Our goal is to ensure OCS is a business which is in harmony with our environment, setting an example for other facilities management services businesses around our region and the world. Over the years, we’ve worked closely with our suppliers and customers to reduce our carbon footprint and our impact on the environment. In particular, through analysing our fleet and reducing our fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by moving to electric and hybrid vehicles, changing our New Zealand electricity supplier to Ecotricity and implementing innovative waste solutions on customer sites to reduce, reuse and recycle.”


Find out more
Sustainability at premium gin distillery

Sustainability at premium gin distillery

Join Silent Pool Distillers, members of Surrey Chambers of Commerce, as they take a deep dive into their sustainability measures and initiatives that they are currently undertaking.



Find out more here
Full Steam Ahead to a Lower Carbon Future

Full Steam Ahead to a Lower Carbon Future

Members of North & Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce, Attwater & Sons Ltd have benefitted from a Chamber Low Carbon grant, which has resulted in substantial steam production savings, equivalent to 65.95 tonnes of CO2e pa, with cost savings estimated to be over £6,000 pa. They were awarded £4,995 towards the installation of a new burner for heating and steam generation for production.

Established in 1868, Attwater & Sons Ltd is a manufacturer and supplier of industrial laminates, composite materials and machined components.

It was via North & Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce that they found out about the support available from the Chamber Low Carbon Programme. From the outset they knew it was a good idea that the burner and control system on their industrial boiler was replaced to improve overall energy efficiency for the company.

For company Financial Director Martin Bate, the Chamber Low Carbon support was, “a very positive experience, particularly the assistance from the Chamber of Commerce and Darren from the Chamber Low Carbon team. Martin went on to say, “We would absolutely recommend the Chamber Low Carbon programme support to other businesses.”

Darren Thomas, Chamber Low Carbon Programme Supply Chain Manager added: “Not only is reducing the firm’s carbon impact good for the planet, but also results in substantial cost savings from a more efficient boiler system.”

Chamber Low Carbon is a £6m European Union, European Regional Development Fund, part funded programme committed to the provision of a FREE suite of services aimed to help businesses improve energy and environmental efficiencies, introduce on site renewable energy generation and save money. East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce and in partnership with North & Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce, Businesswise Solutions Ltd and BOOST are supporting Lancashire businesses in saving money and reducing their carbon footprint.



Find out more here
Sustainability through social media campaign

Sustainability through social media campaign

The Challenge:

Adelphi Manufacturing Co. Ltd, members of Sussex Chamber of Commerce were facing the challenge of their site reaching maximum capacity, so a new production facility was needed.

The Solution:

The new production facility – The Friary – took into account energy efficiency at every stage of the build, and as a result had eco-friendly lighting installed, thermal testing conducted, high quality insulation introduced, and 256 photovoltaic solar panels mounted on the south-facing roof. The building was also constructed to harvest rainwater for use in the company’s cleaning and toilets. Whilst work was underway, an old artesian well was uncovered, which was excavated, re-lined and recommissioned. This, along with the harvested rainwater, now serves all the buildings on site with water for cleaning and is also used for machine testing. An air source heat pump has also been installed to provide eco-friendly heating for our sister building.

The Outcome:

Adelphi’s environmental awareness initiatives extend beyond what has been facilitated by the building of The Friary. We swapped plastic for paper cups and have a conscious drive of everyday recycling awareness among staff, taking our recycling of cardboard above 95% every month. We recycle plastic, metal and glass wherever possible.

Excess electricity is now being generated at a rate of 3% per month, and rainwater harvesting saves Adelphi an average of approximately 12,000 litres per month.

Investment in a facility such as The Friary sends a very positive message to staff and clients alike.

Find out more here
New set-up creates carbon reduction and business efficiency

New set-up creates carbon reduction and business efficiency

Sandler Training by Roy Johnson and Matthew Dashper-Hughes, a sales, leadership and LinkedIn training company, was built around a training delivery model that required both trainers and delegates to travel to a classroom location in the heart of Stoke-on-Trent or we would travel to their location.

Delegates would typically be coming from all over Staffordshire and Cheshire, and often across the UK.

On the 23rd of March 2020 things changed, as they did for many businesses.

Gone was the miles of car travel, the fuel consumption, the car travel time and parking (often 90 minutes per training session), not to mention the catering and associated food wastage.

Necessity is, as they say, the mother of invention. The company’s mission quickly became “to provide better than ‘in person’ learning, in an online environment”.

Whilst it might, initially, have been a case of necessity that led to the change, the positive impact in terms of carbon reduction and business efficiency was instantly recognisable.

Over the first 12 months of the pandemic, Sandler Training delivered Sales, leadership and LinkedIn training to more than 1000 delegates from 240 companies with a negligible impact on the environment.

Had those delegates travelled to the company’s old classroom environment, based on an average distance of 20 miles and an average number of sessions of 4 per delegate, the amount of car travel would have been staggering.

In fact, something in the order of 160,000 miles of car travel to training was saved in 2020, simply because Sandler Training by Roy Johnson and Matthew Dashper-Hughes was delivering training remotely.

Numbers that big are too significant to ignore. In light of that kind of compelling test case, increase in learning outcomes with the company, and efficiencies of time, there has to be a serious question asked about the company and indeed global impact for any face to face, in ‘person’ training.


Find out more here
Managing net zero in business

Managing net zero in business

Members of Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mabbett are helping clients to create a framework for managing net zero in business, providing training and consultancy support.


Find out more here
University of Glasgow and app Save Your Wardrobe

University of Glasgow and app Save Your Wardrobe

A project in collaboration with University of Glasgow and app Save Your Wardrobe (SYW) examines the role of digitalisation in changing how consumers manage and maintain more sustainable approaches to clothing.

As overconsumption was found to be the principal challenge to sustainability, SYW uses AI and IoT to provide users with insights that enable them to reconnect with their clothing, use what they have more effectively, buy less and buy better.

The research revealed that engagement with the app raised awareness and supported behavioural change. The app gave participants visibility as to the amount of clothing they owned, as well as understanding their clothing usage and control their consumption.

The digital overview of the wardrobe allowed participants to be strategic about buying new clothing as well as passing on what they no longer needed through resale and repair services.

UofG found that SYW resulted in a positive opportunity to appreciate clothing, resulting in a deeper connection with existing clothing.

Find out more here
First Glasgow, Alexander Dennis and BYD UK to deliver £9m fleet of 22 new electric vehicles to city in time for UN’s COP26 conference

First Glasgow, Alexander Dennis and BYD UK to deliver £9m fleet of 22 new electric vehicles to city in time for UN’s COP26 conference

Glasgow Chamber of Commerce partner First Glasgow, Alexander Dennis Ltd (ADL) and BYD UK Ltd are collaborating to deliver a £9million investment in 22 new fully electric buses onto the Glasgow city bus network.

First Bus is focused on becoming a leader in the transition to a low-carbon future and has recently announced its commitment to operating a zero-emission bus fleet by 2035 as well as pledging not to purchase any new diesel buses after December 2022.

First Glasgow are investing over £5m alongside an award for £4million as part of Transport Scotland’s new funding stream, the Scottish Ultra Low Emission Bus Scheme, which will be combined to purchase the fully electric buses for the Glasgow bus network. This total investment of over £9m is a massive step forward for the city’s air quality improvement drive and carbon free aspirations.

Find out more here
Glasgow Coffee Festival - The first disposable-cup free coffee festival

Glasgow Coffee Festival - The first disposable-cup free coffee festival

Glasgow Chamber of Commerce member Lisa Lawson, organiser of Glasgow Coffee Festival and founder of Dear Green Coffee, worked in collaboration with reusable coffee cup supplier, KeepCup, making a ‘reusable only’ event.

Despite some initial nervousness about how Keepcup’s reusable cups might be mistreated and discarded, the festival organisers were delighted by the level of support and initiative uptake from attendees.  Across the two-day event, more than 1,000 festival goers (56% of the total attendees) arrived with their own cups.

And it was not just cups being reused at the festival. Mossgiel Farm supplied milk to all festival stallholders in traditional glass milk bottles. These bottles were returned and then reused, saving a further 412 plastic items from going in the bin.

Find out more here
Young Enterprise Scotland inspire the next generation of circular entrepreneurs

Young Enterprise Scotland inspire the next generation of circular entrepreneurs

Young Enterprise Scotland (YES) is a registered charity which inspires and educates young people from all backgrounds through a range of enterprise and entrepreneurship programmes. In 2018, they launched the Circular Economy (CE) Challenge, a six-week programme working with primary schools throughout Glasgow to introduce young people to the circular economy.

The six-week programme begins with a visit to Young Enterprise Scotland’s site at Rouken Glen Park. YES live by the circular economy rules they teach and the site includes a bike recycling scheme, ship containers repurposed into classrooms, a greenhouse for their own food production and their own beehives.

Following this visit, throughout the rest of the programme, the young people work with YES and local circular economy businesses to come up with their own circular product or business model. After 6-weeks of hard work, the programme culminates in a dragon’s den style showcase where the young entrepreneurs pitch their business ideas to a panel of experts.

Find out more here
   177 Bothwell Street goes all-electric to minimise environmental impact

177 Bothwell Street goes all-electric to minimise environmental impact

Glasgow Chamber of Commerce member HFD Property Group’s flagship development at 177 Bothwell Street will be fully electric with zero carbon emissions.

Set to become Glasgow’s largest single office building, 177 Bothwell Street will be powered by 100% renewable energy, with its electrification representing a further 14% reduction in annual energy use.

The combination of building design, quality specification and intelligent technology will make 177 Bothwell Street highly energy efficient, through a series of measures including the building’s facade and glazing, which maximises natural daylight whilst maintaining a high thermal performance.

Already projected to achieve an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) ‘A’ rating, the changes mean the building should now complete with a score below eight – nearly 50% more efficient than a standard ‘A’ rated building. The development is expected to have the most efficient EPC score for a city centre office in Glasgow.

Find out more here
Scotland’s favourite beer set to remove 100m+ plastic rings from packaging in shift from plastic to card

Scotland’s favourite beer set to remove 100m+ plastic rings from packaging in shift from plastic to card

A £7 million investment in packaging equipment at Wellpark Brewery sees Tennent’s well on its way to eradicating single use plastic from consumer packaging. The investment, will remove 150 tonnes of plastic from Tennent’s Lager can packs by 2022, including more than 100 million plastic (hi- and mid-cone) rings.

Work at the famous Wellpark Brewery in Glasgow has commenced and is expected to complete in spring 2021, when the brewer will be able to produce up to 120,000 cans per hour, packaged in fully recyclable cardboard. Made possible by a multi-million-pound investment in plant machinery, the new packaging area will remove all plastic packaging from Tennent’s Lager can formats for the first time in more than 40 years.

Find out more here
CCG launches Scotland’s first mass market net zero building standard

CCG launches Scotland’s first mass market net zero building standard

Glasgow Chamber of Commerce Member CCG (Scotland) Ltd has launched the CCG Net Zero Home, a new housebuilding standard that has been designed to respond to Scotland’s ambitious target of becoming a net zero economy by 2045.

The Net Zero Home is created using a combination of CCG’s expertise in the offsite manufacture of timber systems and building services such as solar PV and air-source heat pumps to deliver a standard of specification that reduces Greenhouse Gas Emissions to a rate less than or equal to 0kg.C02/M2/Year.

The outcomes of analysis have shown that when compared to the baseline Section 6 standard for housebuilding in Scotland, the Net Zero Home standard can reduce dwelling emissions by up to 98%.

Find out more here
ScottishPower helps Glasgow businesses take control of the energy they use

ScottishPower helps Glasgow businesses take control of the energy they use

Throughout winter many businesses tend to increase their energy usage as temperatures drop.

To keep these increases to a minimum, adopting simple energy efficiency measures could be a quick win, with many business leaders seeing it as an important part of a green economic recovery.

Glasgow Chamber partner ScottishPower has teamed up with Carbon Trust to develop an energy saving toolkit which provides business customers with access to a full range of tips, tools and calculators that could save them money and help the environment. It’s sector specific so you can see how other businesses have cut lighting and heating costs and improved their energy management.

By answering five questions about your business you can set up your own personalised toolkit which has energy efficiency advice tailored to your business.

Find out more here
Interface Expands Availability of New Carbon Negative Product Innovations

Interface Expands Availability of New Carbon Negative Product Innovations

Interface, Inc., a worldwide commercial flooring company and global leader in sustainability, expands its first carbon negative carpet tile collection across Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia. To achieve this milestone, Interface has transformed key manufacturing facilities and incorporated new materials to create its new CQuest™ backings line, which includes a new carpet backing that stores more carbon than any before.


Find out more here
Henry Brothers shortlisted for 3 Responsible Business Awards

Henry Brothers shortlisted for 3 Responsible Business Awards

Henry Brothers have been successfully shortlisted in 3 categories for this year’s Business In The Community Responsible Business Awards, including:

  • Wellbeing at Work Award
  • Environmental Leadership Award
  • NI Responsible Company of the Year Award

The NI Responsible Company of the Year Award category is only open to those companies who have achieved CORE: The Standard for Responsible Business, which they successfully renewed for the 3rd time earlier this year. In achieving Gold, the highest possible level, they demonstrated how they are ‘best in class’ when it comes to corporate responsibility and sustainability.


Find out more here
Sustainability at the heart of new tourism industry support scheme

Sustainability at the heart of new tourism industry support scheme

Visit Belfast and Belfast City Council have launched a powerful new initiative designed to rapidly advance sustainability within the city’s tourism sector and redefine the sector’s growth for a generation.

Designed to help individual tourism businesses contribute to improving the environment, address climate change and lift the local economy, a new partnership with global sustainability experts, Green Tourism, will encourage eligible local businesses to boost their environmental credentials and be rewarded for their efforts through an international award.



Find out more here
World’s most sustainable glass bottles created

World’s most sustainable glass bottles created

An aspirational mission to create the world’s most sustainable glass bottle has been lauded an incredible success by the industry, following initial results from a ground-breaking trial.

A revolutionary project undertaken by Encirc (a Vidrala company), and industry research and technology organisation, Glass Futures, has proven that new bottles are able to be made from 100% recycled glass, using only the energy from burning ultra-low-carbon biofuels.


Find out more here
BCC welcomes new rules on international travel restrictions

The decision to simplify the traffic light system in England will be very welcome news for businesses in the travel sector and beyond.  

BCC says business left in the dark on winter Covid contingency plan

Business will be frustrated by the inability of the Government to give them any detail around what circumstances could lead to new restrictions and what support firms could get.

BCC welcomes delay to import checks but says much more work is needed

Announcement of a delay is sensible given the ongoing issues with ensuring trader readiness, the need to build more border control posts and the skills shortages crisis.

BCC: Firms facing acute hiring crisis

The jobs market has continued its summer revival as demand for workers has surged following the easing of Covid restrictions. But record vacancies also highlight the acute hiring crisis faced by many firms.