Carbon Literacy at Charcoalblue
At Charcoalblue, we create amazing spaces where stories are told, and experiences are shared.
Working in partnership with our clients, architects, engineering teams and tech firms, we help to create extraordinary spaces where people come together - from historic theatres to contemporary workplaces, permanent buildings to temporary structures, and from the physical to the digital world.
We are constantly exploring new markets to deliver world-class experiences that build culture, create connection and enhance collaboration for a wide variety of venue spaces, workplace and technology clients.
We form genuine, long-lasting relationships with our clients and design teams all over the world. We believe that by being open, honest, and truly collaborative, we can develop outstanding ideas and deliver successful projects.
We have a corporate social responsibility to our local and global communities. We not only care about what we do for each project, but for the impact we have on the environment and on inspiring the next generation. Whether it be through the sustainability of our designs and open work practice or continuing to create an inclusive workplace and accessible design approach. We are rooted in a belief that celebrates diversity and inclusivity and are openly committed to improving and consistently embedding these values across our work.
THE IMPACT OF CARBON LITERACY TRAINING
We have always believed in leading by example, in 2017 we established our Blue Team, a dedicated CSR team to give back, support grass root organisations and promote awareness. We have always recognised our influence within the industries we work; architecture, construction, culture, performing arts, entertainment, event and workplaces, but felt we lacked the grounding to make a difference.
The Carbon Literacy Training has transformed our thinking, with the knowledge and experience, we feel able to start effecting real change.
Working with WeAreSail, in 2021 five members of our team became Carbon Literate Certified, in April 2022 on Earth Day, we launched our own course to our global studios and it is making a difference to how we practice and think.
- The training is ongoing, we have trained over 82 staff with 49 now fully certified, we aim to have 60% staff trained by the end of 2023 with a running programme for new starters and refresher courses.
- Revised our travel policy to ensure staff awareness and reduce travel where possible. Often travel is essential, we aim to introduce an offsetting scheme ‘Carbon Removal Investment Fund (CRIF)’ to make a modest impact.
- Working with manufacturers to reduce embodied carbon in products & increase use of sustainable materials
- Implementing a full review of our specifications to ensure we promote sustainable thinking in our projects
- A dedicated Environmental Coordinator leading our sustainability efforts across the company
- We have begun a full audit of our studios to make improvements and lower our carbon emissions
- Regular studio-wide forums, including how to reduce our environmental footprints, the impact of the meat and dairy industry and partnering with our design principals to explore more sustainable materials
- In October 2022 we launched our own web-based collection of vegetarian & vegan recipes to engage our team
All of this work is starting to show real benefit to Charcoalblue. We are seeing more clients and projects asking us to work with them to develop projects and designs with sustainability at their heart. Using the knowledge gleaned from the training, we are starting to implement this into our global projects, through sharing its importance with our clients and fellow design team members. We are also now engaging in important conversations with regular contractors and manufacturers to discuss how they can reduce their carbon impact from their work and products. Our aim is to not simply say that our projects are sustainable, but that every single project we work on has sustainability at its heart due to the design methods, products and materials we are specifying.
The Carbon Literacy Training has transformed Charcoalblue into a more consciously sustainably-minded organisation. Our over-arching strategy is to make all of our studios ‘Net Zero’ by either 2030, 2040 or 2050 depending on their location. We also plan to become ISO 14001 accredited by 2025.
None of this would have been possible without the Carbon Literacy training, and for that we thank The Carbon Literacy Project and WeAreSail for opening our minds and showing us the impossible is possible.