Housing association receives plaudits for ongoing sustainability work

  • 16th November 2023

  • Sustainability

A leading Midlands housing provider has been recognised for its sustainability work at the Carbon Literate Organisation Awards.

whg, which owns and manages around 22,000 affordable homes across the Midlands, received bronze accreditation from organisers, the Carbon Literacy Project.

The Carbon Literacy Project aims to raise awareness of the carbon costs and impacts of everyday activities. To date the organisation has delivered training to over 70,000 individuals, communities and companies, estimating a saving of 252,000 tonnes of CO2e.

Jo Shields, Sustainability Lead at whg, said: “As a social landlord we believe that the right thing for the planet is the right thing for our customers and our communities. We are on a journey to embed sustainability as a core guiding principal for how we operate.

“We’re really pleased to have been recognised by the Carbon Literacy Project. We’ve gone as far as creating our own accredited Carbon Literacy training programme for colleagues, with those completing the course given a pin badge and the title ‘sustainability champion’.”

Since 2021, whg has reduced its carbon emissions by 4,000 tonnes while cutting waste by 26%, electricity usage by 15% and gas by 2%.

Building on these successes, whg launched its first Sustainability Strategy earlier this year. The strategy aims to transform and future proof places, inspire and influence colleagues and communities and strengthening regulatory compliance.

Rob Gilham, Corporate Director for Strategy, Assets, and Transformation at whg added: “We know that launching the Strategy and setting ourselves targets is just the start of an ongoing journey and we’re committed to being transparent with all our stakeholders about how we’re doing against these targets as we progress.

“As demonstrated with our recently announced RITTERWALD Certified Sustainable Housing Label, we’re not afraid of taking a more challenging path to achieving our environmental, social and governance aims, and we look forward to continuing to push ourselves further along this journey.”

Jo continued: “We always want to encourage our colleagues and customers to feel empowered to make change. We know that to achieve our goals we need everyone to work together and play their part in reaching net zero.”

The Carbon Literacy Project has a dedicated Toolkit for Social Housing, which provides a range of dedicated tools and resources that are specific for those working in the social housing sector. The materials focus on what housing organisations, tenants and communities can do in their roles to reduce carbon emissions whether that be in the workplace, at home or in the community.

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