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Govtoday in association with the Building and Engineering Services Association presents the Greening Government 2013 Conference and Exhibition: Delivering change, promoting excellence, which will be held on 10 September 2013 at The Brewery Conference Centre, the City of London.
Delivering change, promoting excellence continues Govtoday’s successful series of events from Securing the Future. This is our fifth Annual National Conference examining the progress by Central Government in promoting and achieving measures that incorporate sustainable development to deliver a 34 per cent reduction in emissions by 2020, and 80 per cent by 2050.
On 28 February 2011, the Government announced the publication of ‘Mainstreaming Sustainable Development – The Government’s vision and what this means in practice’. This document unveiled ambitious plans to build a stronger greener government, embedding sustainability as a core strategic priority, rather than an independent issue.
‘Mainstreaming Sustainable Development’ outlined the Government’s “refreshed vision and commitments,” building on the principles set out in the 2005 Sustainable Development Strategy of embedding sustainability and interconnectivity across the three pillars of economy, society and the environment.
The Government’s aim was to lead this agenda by example, with the reform of operations and procurement through a “step change in leadership, efficiency, transparency and accountability”.
The Greening Government Commitment aimed to reduce environmental impact by 2015, with a series of new high level measures to:
Reduce greenhouse gas emissions from a 09/10 baseline from the whole estate and business related transport:
- 10% cut in carbon emissions from Central Government offices in 2010/11, and publication of online real time energy use information
- Reduce domestic business travel flights by 20% by 2015 from 09/10 baseline
Reduce waste by 25% from a 09/10 baseline:
- 10% cut in paper use in 2011/12
- Informed by a feasibility study to be published in 2011, Government will go to market with a requirement for ‘closed loop’ recycled paper
- Redundant ICT equipment must be re-used or recycled
Reduce water consumption from a 09/10 baseline, with reports on water use against best practice
Ensure procurement of sustainable and efficient products whilst reducing the impact of the supply chain:
- Embed efficient procurement practices
- Improve and publish data on supply chain impact
The ‘Annual Report on Government Departments’ Progress against 2015 Targets in 2011-12’, published December 2012, showed that both individuals and organisations across Government are making fundamental changes in work processes.
These fundamental changes have resulted in headline figures such as:
- a 12% reduction in carbon emissions across the Government estate in 2011-12;
- a 24% reduction in paper consumption in one year – exceeding the target of a 10% cut; and
- a 36% reduction in the number of domestic flights taken by Government employees, significantly exceeding the 20% target set for 2015.
Furthermore, carbon reduction figures for 2011-12 add up to an estimated £40 million saving across Government against the 2009-10 baseline, and reductions to Government waste are estimated to have saved almost £4.7 million more in landfill and transportation costs.
The Defra publications, ‘An Action Plan for driving Sustainable operations and procurement across government’ and the ‘Greenhouse Gas Footprint Analysis of UK Central Government 1990-2008,’ (both published in November 2010) and the Environmental Audit Committee Report, ‘Embedding Sustainable Development across Government,’ (published in January 2011), argued the case for the Government to lead by example and embed sustainable development in policy, operations and performance. This latest document aims to put this policy into practice.
Greening Government 2013: Delivering change, promoting excellence will examine the 2011-12 results and progress to date, explain how the commitments have been actioned, transforming Government operations and performance, embedding sustainability strategically across UK Government policy, and ultimately building our green economy of the future.
Contribute to our discussion forum
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