posted by Alex McKay

Case
study: tackling 10:10 year two

Sustainability consultancy M4C made big savings last year, and were determined to keep it up in 2011. Alex McKay tells us how they set out to match their first year results

the m4c team

The M4C team outside the chapel

As a company working in sustainability communications, at M4C  we've committed to practising what we preach!   After managing a massive 20% cut last year, we had to think of fresh new ways to bring our footprint down.

The biggest way we’d saved in the past was turning down the heating; last year we were shocked to find out the thermostat was coming on the in the middle of the night and the over the weekend!  We’re based in a restored chapel where it can get pretty draughty anyway, so we knew we’d have to be very careful with the temperature.  Twiddling the thermostat helped us cut back massively last year - now it was time to really rack our brains to see where other cuts could be made.

We're based in a restored chapel – last year we were shocked to find out the thermostat was coming on the in the middle of the night and the over the weekend!

Action Stations

 We identified travel as an area where we could make some headway, so decided to start using public transport whenever practical and combine meetings where we could. We're also all cycling or walking to work.

Travel wasn’t our only bright idea; we were conscientious about energy use around the office, switching off lights and printers when not in use (although never taking our eye off the heating!).  We really pushed e-communication to reduce the amount of paper we got through, and put an emphasis on recycling what we did use.  When sourcing office supplies we tried to buy locally, and even had a peek into our supplier’s credentials to find the best company to support.

We’re big fans of freecycle, and are very pleased to have picked up a stunning board room table for absolutely nothing! As we’re now sharing our building, we have an opportunity to help others bring down their emissions too.  We're in talks with our landlord about making improvements which will help everyone save energy. 

All our work has paid off as our emissions dropped by 18.9% - that’s nearly 44% over two years, going well over target both times!  

All our work has paid off as our emissions dropped by 18.9% - that’s nearly 44% over two years, going well over target both times!

By the end of the year we’d made a huge 69% of journeys by train, and are really pleased with our progress.   We've got a few things up our sleeve for next year too; we'll be composting our food waste and adding a bit of colour to the chapel with bee-friendly flowers.  On the inside, we'll be building our knowledge of ISO26000 and conducting an eco-survey of the chapel - we'll carry on cutting wherever we can!