An Introduction to sustainability for charity facilities managers

What is Sustainability?

Sustainability is based on a simple principle: everything that we need for our survival and well-being depends, either directly or indirectly, on our natural environment.

To pursue  sustainability is to create and maintain the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony to support present and future generations. Sustainability is not just about beeing "green" it is about  focusing on the social, economic and environmental dimensions of our activities.

Key topics related to susainable working include:

Ethical purchasing

​Ethical Procurement Policies

Many charities have introduced ethical procurement policies. These typically set out the standards which charities require from their suppliers, sub-contractors and sometimes also governments and communities.

Typical Standards

The standards may include the following requirements:

Saving Water

Saving water is part of the wider picture of sustainable facilities management; it's good for the environment and can also save your charity money by reducing your bills for water use and sewage services.  Facilities managers are generally responsible for managing the consumption and disposal of water.  This page sets out some key steps facilities managers can take to reduce water usage.

First steps

Audit

The first step is to audit where water is used your charity.

Designing an effective recycling scheme

The following is a report on a meeting of the Charities Facilities Management Group which focused on recycing.

David Prestage of the BPR Group outlined how to design and implement an effective recycling scheme. The BPR Group is the parent company of Paper Round, the recycling company which was originally set up as a Friends of the Earth project in 1988.

Prestage outlined the main elements to look at when planning a recycling scheme. These include: