Buro Happold reduces carbon footprint
Buro Happold, who already has a target in place to reduce carbon emissions in all the new buildings it designs by 30%, against standard regulations, is also committed to reducing its own energy use.
The company has therefore carried out a UK assessment, for each of the eight largest offices, breaking down its emissions into areas such as commuting (by train, bus, car or other means of transport), business travel, waste, and each building’s gas and electricity use. Calculations in 2006/2007 showed that the average emissions per Buro Happold employee were 2.76 tons of CO2 per year – this is considerably lower than the four-to-five tons a year produced per employee by the average office-based business, but nonetheless the challenge is on to reduce it still further.
Moreover, a typical Buro Happold office (naturally ventilated) currently emits about 70 kg CO2/m2, compared to emissions of 73kg CO2/m2 for a typical naturally ventilated office, and 130kg for a typical air-conditioned office
“The journey to reduce our carbon footprint by 1,000 tons of CO2 begins with a single step – one extra person turning off their computer screen every night,” said Tim La Touche, chartered environmentalist and Systems Development Manager for Buro Happold. “We are 100% committed to treading more lightly on the earth, and are encouraging all our staff to think about things like food origin and packaging, as well as taking office-related measures such as automatic double-sided printing, and reducing corporate travel and commuting. In this way, with small steps, we hope to make a difference to our common future on the planet.”
The status and success of Buro Happold’s ‘greening’ progress will be reviewed three times a year, with the next review due in October. “We are aiming for continual improvement,” said LaTouche.