S+O SUSTAINABILITY REPORT 2021
"Since we opened our doors two decades ago, we have created a robust in-house team providing thorough training and opportunities in the broadcasting industry. Many of our trainees have flourished into highly skilled and successful freelance crew who continue to work closely with us. Our environmental policy and practices have always adhered to governmental regulations.
We believe that transparency is paramount to making long-term changes that have a real impact.
We take responsibility for our impact on the environment seriously and have set new targets as well as updating our policy and ethos to one of reduction.
We will continue to move our company towards a net positive future and have employed several approaches to help us achieve this internally. We hope that you will join us on this journey to truly clean up our industry."
Steph Keelan and Olly Wiggins, S+O Media
OUR GUIDING PRINCIPLES
Our approach to making great content is guided by the following principles: leadership, inclusivity, transparency, integrity, stewardship and continually striving to reach our environmental and social objectives.
OUR CARBON FOOTPRINT
From March 2018-April 2019, we released 36.4 tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere. While this is below the industry average, we know it’s not good enough.
Here’s our plan on how we hope to achieve our 2025 goal of being carbon-neutral, and a start to how we plan to achieve our 2030 ambition of becoming a net-positive company. Meaning that we will give back more to people and Planet than we take out.
MATERIALITY SUSTAINABILITY ISSUES
Material sustainability issues are those that have the greatest importance to S+O and our stakeholders. While, traditionally, our clients and technicians, are our two largest stakeholders, we understand that the Planet and the wider community are of equal importance for the long term sustainability of our business.
In September 2019, we undertook our first audit of our CO2 emissions, (for the period March 2018 - April 2019), and underwent consultation on how we meet our targets of becoming carbon neutral by 2025, and ultimately becoming net positive by 2030.
We have identified the material sustainability issues against which we will measure our impacts going forward.
Carbon Emissions Reducing our carbon emissions as far as possible and investigating offsetting for our remaining emissions. It is important for us to provide working examples about how to reduce our impact in practices as well as translating this through environmental awareness campaigns to our staff and clients.
Energy Use Supporting our carbon targets by powering our office and warehouse with 100% renewable energy, reducing our usage through efficiency and updated technology.
Waste generated Generally reducing waste and prioritising reuse over recycling where possible.
Travel and Transport Monitoring and reducing the amount of non-essential business travel where possible, supporting a move to more sustainable modes of transport and commuting for our staff and technicians, and growing our existing fleet of hybrid and electric vehicles as soon as the technology becomes available.
Procurement Embedding sustainable procurement by ensuring that the Company is purchasing from socially, ethically and environmentally responsible businesses.
Staff experience Enabling our staff and freelancers to feel included, excel in all dimensions of work life, and providing various training initiatives for them to develop their technical skills and environmental awareness.
Financial sustainability Achieving resilience, sustainability and effectiveness through a continued focus on delivering excellent service.
We pledge to do the following in areas we consider a priority:
Be carbon neutral by 2025 and net positive by 2030 by switching to 100% renewable energy, understanding our current CO2 footprint, creating a measured report and benchmark to work from. Upgrading our entire fleet to hybrid and fully electric.
Reducing our Energy consumption by 10% by 2021 by keeping office at 24C, the warehouse an area infrequently used at around 13-16C. Switching off plugs and light switches when not in use. Educating staff and clients about energy use with signage. Installing automated lighting. Taking advantage of off peak energy time for charging vehicles. Using desk and standing fans to limit air con use.
Waste Reduction and Recycling by becoming paper free by 2022
Reduce water wastage by 5% by installing flush control reducers and signage for kitchen
*a statement regarding our approach to carbon offsetting. We understand that carbon offsetting is not enough. We have committed to doing everything in our power to reduce our carbon footprint as a company, educating our staff and clients on how to reduce theirs, only then do we offset what emissions we cannot avoid. The scheme we have chosen to align ourselves with is replanting European ecosystems, planting native trees in area that have been deforested.
Energy As of November 2019 we have run on 100% renewable energy. We get our energy from Good Energy’s Creative Energy Project - as this aligns with our vision for the industry and supports a sustainable future for British Broadcasting and Media.
Vehicles Our fleet consists of 8 vehicles, 2 of which are fully electric with a third on the way. Our production vehicles are currently ULEZ complaint and we plan to phase them out for hybrids and fully electric vehicles a the market catches up.
Operations/Office We use Ecosia as our default search engine. We use environmentally friendly cleaning supplies and and choose products that further support social and environmental initiatives around the world. Loo roll is supplied by Who Gives a Crap, a company putting sanitisation in areas around the world still struggling with public hygiene. All paper is recycled and unbleached.
Staff Staff welfare is a priority for us that is why we are proud to be a London Living Wage employer. We are currently applying for London Living Wage accreditation. We continue to educate our staff on the climate crisis, biodiversity loss and social impact that our industry has, as we know we won’t achieve our targets without them.
Consumables Our consumables come packaged in heat-sealed biodegradable plastic bags. The company we get our bags from certifies that the bags will break down within two years in landfill.
Please note, they cannot go into food waste or compost bins. If you cannot dispose of them correctly, please send them back to S+O for responsible disposal. We will continue to look for solutions that are better for the Planet and easier for end users. When in doubt, send your consumables back to us here at S+O to be discarded responsibly.
We will always use rechargeable batteries where possible, again where batteries are used on set, please send back to S+O if on location for responsible discarding.
LED lighting We are committed to investing in new LED lighting technology to reduce on set emissions.
Social responsibility We believe in giving back to the community. We do this by annually donating a percentage of our profits to Shelter, Crisis and the Trussell Trust. From time to time we switch up the charities, but our CSR policy will always address concerns and issues that matter to us and our team. We also try to support at least one local charity so our contributions go directly to our neighbours.
We have recently collaborated with two local charities to provide a film course for young people in the area to give them access and experience in the industry, as well as empowering them to tell their own stories.
Facts to consider…
Energy emissions from across the UK’s creative sector stood at 44,000 tonnes in 2018 (source: The Creative Energy Project)
To produce one hour of television we are sending (on average) 12.9 tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere, (genre dependent) (source: Carbon Literacy Project)
Energy is the dominant contributor to climate change, accounting for around 60% of total global greenhouse gas emissions. (source: United Nations)
OUR GOAL FOR 2025
Now that we have our first data sets to build upon, we will work to uphold our commitment to reduction, transparency, inclusivity, collaboration and stewardship. We hope that you will work with us towards achieving these ambitions but necessary goal, and look forward to being able to report our progress over the next 12 months.
ABOUT THIS REPORT
The report was developed with a sustainability consultant. We wanted to work with an expert in the field and recognised that we wanted to contribute to our corporate and social responsibility.
We hope by reflecting on our own behaviours and energy uses we can influence and inspire positive change. 3 “As this is S+O’s first sustainability report, they do not yet have historical data on the Company’s impact. I am delighted to report that they have taken the initial and crucial steps to transform the Company into a truly sustainable business. I am proud to be able to assist them in taking their company to the next level with our Novel Approach.
Khandiz Joni, Co-Founder and Sustainability consultant
A Novel Approach