What we're doing
How we're tackling sustainability at Peabody
We’ve already identified what’s important and our high-level strategy. We’ve also set up an energy saving advice service to help residents reduce their energy bills. You can learn more about this below.
We’ve also addressed:
Climate change is real and is mostly being driven by releasing carbon into the atmosphere. Carbon is usually emitted in the form of carbon dioxide (CO2) or methane (CH4). For shorthand, we talk about our "carbon emissions".
Why is climate change a cause of concern?
Mostly it's because it brings huge amounts of risk and we don't really know exactly what will happen. This is a problem because most of the things we depend on – like crops and healthcare – depend on a stable climate.
For example, if rain patterns change, as we’ve already seen, crops can be drowned or roasted in a drought. This reduces the availability of food and increases its price.
In another example, sea levels are already known to be rising, caused by melting ice at the poles. Many coastal communities were built around old sea levels and will cost hundreds of billions of pounds to repair, move or rebuild them.
Climate Change Act 2008
The United Kingdom was the first country in the world to create a law requiring carbon reductions. It’s called the Climate Change Act 2008 and says that our country must collectively reduce its carbon emissions by 80% by the year 2050. This is significant, as it will mean every part of society will need to respond and adapt to a low carbon future: government, people and industry acting together.
The Greater London Authority has set an additional target. London will aim to reduce carbon emissions by 60% by 2025 to ensure it can meet the 2050 deadline of 80%.
Both of these targets mean that we at Peabody must respond proactively and start to reduce carbon emissions from our properties and from other business actions.
We are achieving this through:
- A programme to install new windows and insulation to ensure heat stays in buildings, and upgrading boilers to improve how efficiently we use natural gas. All of these measures reduce heating bills for tenants. Read more about how we’re improving homes.
- Setting strict environmental standards when we build new homes.
- Encouraging contractors to reduce the carbon emissions from their services.
- Installing solar photovoltaic panels on our properties, so that electricity is produced from the sun rather than carbon-rich fuels like gas and coal.
As already mentioned, we also have a service which can give our residents advice about how to reduce their bills by taking positive environmental action.
Leading by example
As far as our own environmental performance is concerned, we lead by example.
- Waste and recycling. If you visit our offices, you will find recycling bins dotted around (general waste bins are only found in our kitchens). We believe recycling should be a priority and disposal the last option. Our kitchens also have food waste caddies.
- Transport. We encourage our staff to cycle to work and have a secure area where they can leave their bikes. Where a car is needed, we have a pool car which has low emissions - in fact low enough to ensure it avoids the Congestion Charge, showing that what’s good for the environment makes sound economic sense.
Staff are encouraged to take public transport to meetings. If they ever need to take a taxi, they use Green Tomato cars, which has a fleet made up of electric vehicles and others with hybrid or biodiesel fuel sources.
- Energy use. We have a full carbon baseline for our head office. Because we are moving from our head office in a few years, there are very few cost-effective improvements we can make at the moment. Our goal is for our new head office to meet high environmental standards ('BREEAM Excellent') which will drastically reduce our corporate energy use and how much we spend on gas and electricity.
We’re committed to reducing our environmental impact and carbon emissions through practical action. We have some new-build estates which have significantly reduced our overall environmental impact. Plus we’ve installed new technologies in some existing estates to achieve the same aim.
You can find examples below:
You can also watch our video about how we introduced solar PV panels on some of our estates:
A government scheme called Green Deal lets you install energy-saving measures in your home, and pay for them afterwards from the savings to your energy bill.
How does it work?
Putting in insulation or a new boiler can reduce your heating costs. But installation costs a lot of money.
The Green Deal lets you install those energy-saving measures with no upfront costs. And, because you’ll be using less heating, your bills will drop. The savings you make are used to pay for the installation through your electricity meter. The government says that your repayments must meet a "Golden Rule" – what you pay back per month can't make your bills higher than they were before.
Who can have a Green Deal?
We’ve examined the Green Deal carefully. It is important that interested residents read our statement before thinking of progressing with a Green Deal:Peabody's Green Deal positioning statement