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Baker Homes Blog

Sustainable Swan: our commitment to sustainability

Posted by Guest author on 27/05/15 24:08

At Swan, sustainability is about creating healthy, vibrant communities that meet the diverse needs of our residents, both now and in the future. Our commitment to sustainability means we strive to protect and enhance the environment, use natural resources wisely and build social cohesion.

We have the potential to inspire and influence 20,000 people in our homes, this is an important position to be in and everything we can do to support our residents lead more sustainable lives has endless benefits. Our aim is to be an industry leader in developing sustainable communities, leading by example and sharing best practice amongst all our stakeholders. As a group we have a challenging target of reducing our carbon emissions by 20% by 2025 and SHIFT has helped us along the way to doing this. We have also established a carbon scorecard whereby we can capture our carbon emissions from across the group, this has been an important tool for looking at high emitting areas and how we can make future reductions.

Achieving our SHIFT Gold accreditation was just one of the ways that we have been able to show our commitment to the environment and to help mitigate the impact that we inevitably create. The SHIFT criteria has been filtered through to the Green Team here at Swan whereby each member has an action assigned to them, many of these actions are SHIFT motivated. We have representation from across the business allowing us to tackle a wide variety of issues; this has been one of the key actions that have enabled us to achieve our gold status.

Our strongest areas are our office operations and communications with our internal staff and residents. Annually, Swan delivers a successful sustainability week for office staff whereby a number of workshops and initiatives take place. Last year the week included eco-driving for a number of staff members, bird box making with Essex Wildlife Trust and a smoothie bike to raise awareness of sustainable methods of transport.

A significant focus is reducing fuel poverty and making our homes more energy efficient. One of the ways we are doing this is through training all our front line staff so they can provide practical advice and support to our residents should they ever need it. Swan delivers a number of projects with a variety of partners and has most recently won a Green Apple Award for a water efficiency project that was delivered with Axis Europe and Essex and Suffolk Water. With 60% take-up this project realised average water savings of 41.94 litres/property/day, which equated to an annual monetary saving of £47.10.

Article written by Frankie Bowen, Sustainability Coordinator at Swan Housing Group.

Topics: Registered Social Landlords, SHIFT, Baker Homes, Fuel poverty, SHIFT accredited organisation, Residents, Wellbeing

'THE REVIEW' details the achievements and progress of the social housing sector on key environmental performance metrics. Download the report below 

Baker Homes, The Review, UK social landlords environmental performance, environmental benchmarking

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