Oktra, the award-winning office design company, has slashed its total carbon footprint by over 30% for the year ending May 2017 compared to the previous year.

 

The reduction means Oktra has retained The Planet Mark™ sustainability certification for a fifth consecutive year.

Oktra has been measuring and reporting its carbon footprint for eight years and has been a holder of The Planet Mark™ since 2014.

Oktra’s total carbon footprint in its latest reporting period stood at 85.3 tonnes of CO2 equivalent (tCO2e), a decrease of 30.3% on the 2016-17 period. Its relative carbon footprint in 2016-17 was 0.78 tCO2e per employee – a decrease of 22.6%.

The reduction in total carbon footprint can be mainly attributed to a 97% decrease in indirect emissions from air travel and a 49% decrease in carbon emissions from employee-owned vehicles. The drop in emissions also reflects a reduction in the carbon intensity of UK grid electricity. Indirect emissions also dropped significantly from rail travel (down 54%) , water consumption (down 84%), and courier use (down 17%). But the overall reduction was partially offset by an increase in emissions from other emissions sources, including waste (up 40%) and paper consumption (up 102%).

Oktra employees were formally presented with The Planet Mark™ Certificate at their London office.

Commenting on the results, Oktra Sustainability and Compliance manager Dieuwertje Kingma said: “It’s been great to have been part of The Planet Mark™ programme and it’s even better to see that being part of it means we’re able to reduce our carbon footprint by more than 30% last year – our best result so far!”

At the presentation Steve Malkin, founder of The Planet Mark™, set out what the company had achieved and the positive environment and social impact the company was having.

“This is the eighth consecutive year that Oktra has managed to reduce the carbon emissions of its operations,” he said. “This is an outstanding achievement in itself, but given that Oktra’s latest carbon report shows the company has achieved a further 30% reduction in annual carbon emissions, what we are witnessing here is true sustainability leadership in action. These improvements are taking place across the business, from reducing international flights to cutting electricity consumption. It goes to show what can be achieved over a sustained period.”

The Planet Mark™ Certificate recognises Oktra’s good practice in sustainability, including:

  • measuring carbon emissions from electricity, natural gas, trave, water, waste, courier use and paper usage
  • cutting its total carbon footprint by 30.3% and its carbon footprint per employee by 22.6%
  • investing in the Eden Project to support education on climate change
  • storing 260 tCO2e by protecting one acre of endangered rainforest through the charity Cool Earth
  • committing to engage employees and suppliers to drive improvements.

Going forwards, Oktra said it planned to get a better understanding of the various waste streams in the business to reduce its waste and up its recycling rates, as well as find ways to reduce paper wastage.

Holders of The Planet Mark™ have a minimum requirement to reduce their carbon emissions by 2.5% per year.

The Planet Mark™ was founded in 2013 with the iconic Eden Project in Cornwall, UK, and is awarded to businesses, properties, new developments and projects that are committed to reducing their carbon emissions.

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