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27 Mar 2024

Employee-owned company, PB Design, advance towards net zero

Employee-owned company, PB Design, advance towards net zero
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PB Design, working collaboratively with Make UK, have implemented a range of carbon reduction initiatives including upgraded insulation, installation of solar panels and LED lighting, hybrid working and digital meetings, to reduce fuel consumption.

PB design provide standard and custom-built products for a range of customers, in a variety of sectors, across the globe.

In recognition of their efforts, PB Designs were shortlisted for six categories in the Make UK Manufacturing Awards 2023, scooping wins in the Developing Future Talent category and Manufacturer of the Region (for the South).

PB understand that informing employees about environmental goals and educating them on how they can help is critical to success, so training is still a big part of their strategy. Investment in training demonstrates PB’s commitment to increasing performance and shows staff how important they are in making this happen.

As an IEMA (Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment) training partner, Make UK provide a range of high-quality training courses. In addition to company-wide programmes, training specially designed for supervisors and leaders, Make UK provide professional-level qualifications for experienced environmental practitioners, such as IEMA Certificate in Environmental Management (PIEMA) and IEMA Diploma in Sustainable Business Practice. PB have invested in several training courses.

Scott Commons, QHSE Manager says: “Make UK consistently deliver training material that is well-structured and user-friendly, going above and beyond expectations. The tutors effectively communicate each point and urge us to use relevant examples for our organisation.”

In January 2023, PB Design established The Green Team, with the aim of promoting environmental awareness throughout the business and conveying the message that everyone has a crucial role to help combat global warming and reduce carbon footprint. The team attend regular meetings, which are open for anyone in the company to join. Scott says, “Because The Green Team is open to the whole workforce, we benefit from diverse perspectives and unique solutions to problems.”

Mark Stubbs, Environment, Health and Safety Consultant, at Make UK says, “Engaging with all levels of the workforce to explore attitudes and perceptions in more detail helps ensure that any cultural programme you’re introducing is not viewed as a top-down initiative. Since culture is dictated by people’s behaviour when they are unsupervised, this sense of ownership is essential.”

It is the team’s collective commitment to reducing environmental impact that has enabled them to complete scope 1 and 2.

With the installation of additional solar panels PB have doubled their annual generation of renewable electricity from some 60,000 to 120,000kWh. This generates £21,000 p.a. and combined with a new battery storage installation enables them to use more of their renewable electricity (rather than import it at 0.25p a kWh). Within their factory they have reduced their carbon emissions from imported electricity and gas by 40% from 25 tonnes in 2022 to 14 tonnes in 2023. PB have offset emissions from company vehicles and other scope 2 activities by purchasing 40 (tonnes of) Gold Standard Verified Carbon Units (VCU’s) in the Rimba Raya Bioversity Reserve in Indonesia and the Soubre Hyropower Project in Ivory.

All of this means that PB Design are now “net zero” at scope 2. PB Design’s next step is to progress with the demanding task of achieving scope 3.

Martin Elliker, Senior Learning and Development Consultant at Make UK, explains, “Scope 3 includes all emissions that an organisation is indirectly responsible for, up and down its value chain. Businesses have much less control on how Scope 3 emissions are addressed.”

PB Design collaborate with suppliers on solutions to reduce emissions and consider environmental impact when sourcing new suppliers. Scott says, “I always enquire about carbon footprint and what they’re doing to reduce their carbon emissions. It is imperative that they’re aligned with our goals.”

Source: Employee-owned company, PB Design, lead the charge toward Net Zero | Make UK

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