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Becoming the Greenest Government Ever

Classification:Energy, Governance, Watchdog
Document type:SDC Reports & Papers
Download:SDC_SDiG09_webFINAL.pdf - 1275 KB
Summary:imageBecoming the 'Greenest Government Ever': achieving sustainability in operations and procurement, is the fifth of the SDC's annual watchdog reports which scrutinise Government's progress towards more sustainable operations. It finds that the savings made to date are only the tip of the iceberg, and concludes that by extending its commitment to become the "Greenest Government ever" beyond carbon to a wider range of sustainability issues including water and waste - would enable the new Government to save hundreds of millions more over the course of this Parliament.

Analysis of progress made under the previous Government suggests that, despite the slow pace of change, improvements in energy and water consumption, waste, recycling and road transport performance are likely to add up to £300-350 million over the next five years, even if no further progress is made. This includes:

• £13.7M fuel savings from reduced road travel in 2008-09 alone. This also saved the equivalent of 1.7million hours of staff time – over 1,000 full time staff working a full year – without counting the savings from reduced car purchases, repairs and administration (iv)
• Savings of 18 million cubic metres of water – the equivalent of 7,200 Olympic swimming pools, adding up to £13M worth of water bills in 2008-09(v)
• Landfill cost savings from reducing waste by 126,000 tonnes in 2009-08 – the equivalent of the total waste produced by over 250,000 UK individuals

The report estimates that, if the new Government succeeds in meeting its commitment to cut carbon emissions from Government offices by 10% over 12 months, this will result in benefits to society equivalent to £13 million, in addition to any reduction in energy bills.

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