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Epson Europe assesses its eco-credentials

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Epson Europe has unveiled the second edition of its dedicated European Sustainability Report, ‘The Green Choice’.

The report, a voluntary effort of the company, tracks the progress of its sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives to date, in alignment with the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) and the UN’s sustainable development goals (SDGs).

It also outlines Epson’s goals and ambitions for the future. The practical steps the company took in 2018 include schemes to reduce emissions, waste, energy and water use from the company’s offices as well as its supply chain.

Building on previous projects, such as Epson Europe’s robotics and textile printing programmes with universities, local school collaborations and international sponsorships, the firm has announced a new educational scheme to support over 10,000 students of all ages.

Entitled the ‘New Horizons’ initiative, the scheme is being developed across the 2019 financial year (up until April 2020) to elevate the understanding of sustainability, drawing from the company’s expertise in sustainable technology, paper recycling, waste reduction and more.

“Initiatives like ‘New Horizons’ are just one piece of a global puzzle for Epson, recognising and acting on what we acknowledge as our responsibility as a global technology company,” said Kazuyoshi Yamamoto, President of Epson Europe. “We must look beyond profit generation to long-term solutions, providing our customers and communities with products and services that not only meet their needs, but exceed them.”

Moving forward, Epson has confirmed partnerships with:

  • The Royal Academy of Arts, UK: Continuation of a long-term partnership allowing around artistic students from varying backgrounds to have access to the latest technology to support their education.
  • Sustainability classes, Germany: In-school workshops to teach students about the importance of sustainability and the concept of energy efficiency.
  • EDU2030, Spain: Supporting a pilot project in Barcelona to introduce sustainable technology solutions and biodiversity conservation areas to a school of more than 400 students between the ages of three and 11. 

“Epson has always sought to enhance efficiency in everything it does as a company – including improving its impact on society and the environment, from conception to mission completion,” said Henning Ohlsson, CSR Director Epson Europe. “Embedding the United Nations’ SDGs into this approach has only strengthened our resolve to demonstrate and expand the value that we bring as a company.”

Highlights from 2018 CSR activities include:

  • All Epson European offices have taken steps to ensure that all single use plastics will be removed from offices by 2020
  • Increased renewable energy use to 55%, on target for the new goal of 100% by 2020.
  • Reduced CO2 emissions by employee by over 6%, and reduced scope 1 & 2 GHG emissions by almost 18% in warehouses, despite expanding in both employee base and warehouse footprint in Europe.

You can download Epson Europe’s full 2018 Green Choice sustainability report here.

Image by Dominique Knobben from Pixabay

Sustainability pays: how to take care of the planet and your profits

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Being good to the environment is great for your business finances.

Taking control of your own energy needs – using onsite generation and storage – can reduce costs and cut carbon emissions. It will also protect your business from energy supply disruption.

Download our research report to discover the 4 steps you can take to accelerate your energy sustainability and improve your profits.

Sustainability: The advantages of using smart technologies in commercial buildings

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By Frankie Byron, Sustainability Surveyor at Lambert Smith Hampton (LSH)

As the UK Government pledges to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, the urge for sustainable buildings is stronger than ever.

According to the UK Green Building Council, an estimated 40% of the UK’s carbon footprint is attributed to the built environment, half of which comes from energy used in building. Heating alone created 10% of the country’s carbon footprint. 

Yet sustainability is still out of reach for many property owners and managers. Old buildings, small budgets, tenants’ varying needs – there are many factors that make it hard for a property manager to truly measure the sustainability of a building and to act upon any findings.

Considering this, Frankie Bryon, Sustainability Surveyor at LSH discusses why smart technology can help buildings improve on sustainability as well introduce other benefits that include promoting health and wellbeing and enable agile working…

Smart is sustainable
Firms’ sustainability strategies have been a major driver of the rollout of smart technology. By providing more efficient controls over energy usage, it can deliver significant reductions in energy consumption.

It is no coincidence that some of the smartest office buildings in the world are also rated by BREEAM as among the greenest. Smart systems allow lighting, heating, air conditioning and ventilation to be monitored and adjusted according to a building’s usage and occupation. Energy wastage can be minimised by turning off heating and lighting when an office is unoccupied. Intelligent building facades may also be used to control the heat and light entering the building in response to changing weather conditions.

The next generation of energy efficient smart buildings have their own sources of power generation and some are even able to generate more energy than they consume, with surplus energy going back to the grid.

Workplace wellbeing
Smart technology is increasingly recognised as having an important role to play in promoting health and wellbeing. It can help to create environments that support alert, energised workforce. 

Sensors can monitor air and water quality, light, temperature and noise levels. Issues known to affect workers’ concentration levels such as poor air quality or a lack of natural light can thus be detected and fixed.

More advanced smart office technology can also make use of data from wearable biometric devices monitoring the health and comfort of workers. In fact, research by Instant Offices shows 45% of the UK workforce would feel comfortable with sharing information via wearable devices for the purpose of protecting their health and wellbeing. 

Ambient conditions can be adjusted when workers show signs of discomfort, or an individual’s immediate working environment can be changed according to their personal preferences.

Work smarter
Sensors, smartphones or wearable devices may collect data monitoring environmental factors such as temperature, light, air quality and noise, as well as data on employees’ usage of the building.

The data collected can deliver building managers with actionable insights on how to improve a building’s performance, or it may feed through to automated systems controlling the office environment. With smart technology continually evolving, it is being used to support an increasingly wide range of applications, providing multiple benefits to building owners, investors, occupiers and employees.

Enabling agile working
Smart technology is providing occupiers with a better understanding of who uses the office at any given time, how they work and with whom they collaborate. These insights can enable increasingly agile, flexible working.

Some of the newest generation of smart buildings have fewer desks than workers. Instead, employees may reserve a workspace using an app, with a choice of spaces depending on whether they would prefer a collaborative workspace, private meeting area or a quiet space.

Smart systems may thus facilitate a move away from the convention of employees ‘owning’ a desk, which then goes unused for periods when they are out of the office. Flexible workspaces can be used more efficiently and may be continually adapted to changing employee demand and new work styles.

Improving workplace experiences
As well as enabling desk and room bookings, workplace apps can also be used to order food and drink, book gym sessions or reserve parking spaces. They may allow employees to control ambient settings, as well as providing new ways of connecting and collaborating with colleagues.

Workplace apps are thus developing as important interfaces between employees and office buildings, giving individuals greater control over their office experience. This will help to align the modern office with the expectations of a younger workforce for whom smart technology already plays an integral part of their lifestyles outside of work.

The benefits of being smart
Overall the advantages that smart offices offer are in terms of the following:

  • Sustainability
  • Employee wellbeing
  • Agile working 
  • Workplace experience

Smart offices also aid talent attraction and retention, by creating spaces in which people want to work, while appealing to workers’ environmental values. Modern, sustainable offices can help to reinforce a company’s brand values and define a progressive, forward-thinking corporate culture.

Image by Quinn Kampschroer from Pixabay 

CENTRICA REPORT: Why sustainability is good for business

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Sustainable businesses see energy as an opportunity, not a financial burden. They’re exploiting distributed energy technologies, such as onsite generation and storage, to cut costs and carbon emissions.

This also increases operational resilience and enhances reputation.  

Download Centrica’s research report to see the 4 steps you can take to accelerate your energy sustainability and improve your business performance.

CENTRICA REPORT: Steps to sustainable business growth

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What does it take to become a more sustainable, future-focused organisation? 

Today’s consumers, shareholders and governments are demanding that businesses take responsibility for their carbon emissions, and work toward a low carbon future.

Our new report explains what it means to be a sustainable business and the steps you can take to start your journey.

We share the most significant results from our research, the changing role of energy, and the actions businesses should take to prepare for a more commercially and environmentally sustainable future.

https://www.centricabusinesssolutions.com/distributed-energy-future-trends-LP