The Emergency Response Team Search and Rescue UK (ERT SAR UK)
We are committed to minimising the impact of our activities on the environment. This policy is effective from 1st October 2021.
This statement covers activities at our premises and events.
We have considered many positions including The Paris Agreement, a legally binding international treaty on climate change. It was adopted by 196 Parties at COP 21 in Paris, on 12 December 2015 and entered into force on 4 November 2016. Also; United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Environmental Policy and other leading thinktanks and authorities on climate change.
The key points of its strategy to achieve this are:
We plan to integrate environmental concerns into all planning and design decisions as far as reasonable and raise the awareness of local impact and our decision in our activities.
Continually seek to measure and improve environmental performance
Be aware of small decisions which may benefit the environment such as the use of reusable water containers or larger versus smaller water bottles etc.
Training and awareness
Raise awareness of environmental issues and promote individual good practice through briefings and the presence of Environmental Champions.
Require suppliers to provide goods and services with the minimum adverse environmental impact
Ensure that goods and materials purchased comply fully with UK government and EU legislation and recognised environmental best practice
Utilities and natural resources
Make efficient and environmentally responsible use of energy, water and other natural resources
Minimise waste by ensuring all operations are as efficient as possible
Exploring the option to use digital rather than paper / print options.
Monitoring our waste and so on, for any harm to the environment or any negative impact to communities.
Actively promote re-use and recycling, both internally and with suppliers
Whilst it may be impractical or unrealistic to go 'completely green' in our environmental policy and efforts to reduce our carbon footprint and greenhouse gas emissions, for all our services all the time, we would like to try to lean into that ethos and aim to do so when practical and if we can. For example
Charity Meetings, General Meetings, Group Discussions and conferences may be possible to exchange face to face meetings, and therefore travel, with online and virtual options when possible.
Cf: Reducing the Carbon Footprint of Academic Conferences by Online Participation: The Case of the 2020 Virtual European Consortium for Political Research General Conference Published online by Cambridge University Press: 22 February 2021 [LINK]
Air travel may be essential for some of our activities but where possible we will explore ways to offset the carbon emissions or evaluate the need to travel for some meetings and training in lieu of virtual or teleconferencing, if possible.
Volunteers and staff will be encouraged to use public transport, cycle and walk to work when / if possible
The use of cars for single occupant journeys is discouraged; however, even little changes like driving once or twice a week versus everyday are considered small but useful efforts.
We will aim to meet or exceed all the environmental legislation that relates to the UK
All staff and volunteers will be expected to take measures to minimise environment impact through simple measures
Managers and heads of department will ensure that environmental issues are integrated into the planning and decision-making process
Communicate environmental performance both within the organisation and to the external community through the Accountability Review
These commitments will be demonstrated through the introduction of suitable policies, practices and programmes. Environmental performance will be reported in our annual Accountability Review.
Our Health, Safety and Environmental Committee will monitor environmental impact and review this policy statement annually
This Environmental policy was updated on 1st October 2021.
and updated 29 January 2023