Making Green Count
PwC places leadership at the core of its strategy, including in its corporate social responsibility policy. The underlying commitment requires not only doing what is right for clients and staff but also doing what is right for the community and environment - because awareness of and concern for environmental issues make us better citizens and more relevant business partners. At PwC we have committed to channel our efforts to green our operations. We have a Green Committee within the firm that works to raise this awareness amongst staff and clients. This Committee includes members from the partner group and staff working within the different lines of service of the firm.
As part of our efforts we are committed to carry out the following activities:
- monitor and take steps to improve our environmental performance in terms of the parameters that we feel are mostly relevant to our operations: paper consumption, travel and energy consumption
- assess and monitor our carbon footprint in order to reduce our impact on the environment. Last year we started measuring the footprint of our two offices. This measure is a key tool in the strategy of any organisation that seeks to manage in a sustainable manner its business, raise awareness amongst staff and clients and be a thought leader in the market
- carry out internal surveys to gauge staff awareness and attitudes towards the environment and green initiatives to identify were we need to focus our efforts
- support green initiatives, including conservation and clean-up projects
In carrying out an internal survey in 2010 across the firm we aimed to capture the general attitudes of the people working at PwC towards the environment and related green issues, namely; use of energy, paper wastage, recycling, travelling habits and care for the general environment. In analysing responses to this survey, we extracted meaningful patterns and carried out observations at the office. The emerging key points were taken forward and discussed further during interviews with staff. This project has proposed a number of recommendations aimed at addressing particular shortcomings as arising from the results of the survey. This snapshot is meant to be a useful tool, primarily, in understanding where our staff stands, and also to shape a roadmap of future initiatives by the Green Committee.
We have implemented a number of green initiatives in both of our offices. These include:
- the use of energy saving lights throughout most of our premises together with the installation of motion sensors that turn off lights when floors and rooms are not in use
- the implementation of a Building Management System to manage electricity use and control electricity intensity depending on the availability of external light
- improved distribution and flexibility in controlling all air conditioning units to achieve better temperature control, particularly in open areas and taking into consideration the proximity to external windows
- we have studied energy saving options in the design and development of the new floor at our Qormi office
- introduced electronic payslips in line with the firm’s commitment to significantly reduce paper usage
- giving preference to recycled material for products purchased on a regular basis, for example hand towels and other products
- extended the use of double-sided printing to include all client deliverables as well as financial statements besides documents for internal use
- affixed signage near lifts, switches and other areas to constantly encourage energy saving measures through simple gestures
- introduced recycling of paper, plastic, batteries and other waste streams
- encouraged the use of mugs and tumblers to reduce the use of disposable cups
- encourage the use of tele-conferencing and online meetings which reduces the need to travel frequently
We constantly strive to improve our performance through regular communication and awareness across all our staff to motivate increased take-up of these practices and to come up with new measures and improvements.
In addition to the initiatives that we endeavour to implement internally, we also aim to assist clients in placing the environment, and more broadly sustainability, at the core of their business operations through our sustainability services.