Two large housing associations have teamed up with a West Midlands university to explore how they can improve their environmental performance.
Sanctuary Housing and Platform Housing Group will work with the University of Worcester and the environmental consultancy Loreus Ltd on the EcoHousing project.
The project will support the landlords, which own around 100,000 homes and 46,000 homes respectively, to reduce their carbon footprint and embed sustainability in their organisations.
The programme will be based on EcoCampus, Loreus’ scheme to help organisations achieve and maintain accreditations to the environmental management system standard ISO14001:2015.
Having held ISO14001 accreditation for several years, the University of Worcester will share its knowledge with Sanctuary and Platform to help them improve their environmental performance.
Katy Boom, director of sustainability at the University, said: “We are really pleased to be able to share our expertise with both Sanctuary and Platform Housing Group and to help them to improve their environmental performance.
“It’s never been a more important time for businesses and organisations to take stock of their sustainability credentials and do all they can to assist in addressing the climate emergency.”
The project will aim to better understand the two housing associations’ impact on the environment, focusing on areas such as waste management, travel, energy efficiency and reducing fuel poverty.
The pair have appointed Jessica Tasney as an EcoHousing coordinator, who will work with the housing associations and the unviersity to deliver the project effectively.
Tasney will combine her role with one at the university where she will support with teaching and research around sustainability and environmental management systems.
Jessica said: “I am thrilled to be appointed to this new role. I believe improving environmental performance is one of the most important conversations of our time and I’m really excited to be involved in this collaborative effort to make improvements.
“The University of Worcester has been on a long and successful journey around implementing its environmental management system and improving its environmental performance, so this is a great opportunity to share examples of best practice.”
Donna Williams, Sanctuary’s director – sustainability and climate change, commented: “Reducing our impact on the environment is a key objective for Sanctuary. The EcoHousing project will allow us to share best practice and identify innovative solutions as part of our longer-term strategy to minimise our carbon footprint and make our homes more energy efficient.”
Dan Box, compliance officer at Platform Housing Group, said: “Sustainability isn’t just about improving environmental performance, it’s about increasing social wellbeing too, and this project helps us to recognise how the health of the environment and the health of individuals and communities are closely linked.
“Through recognising this, we can look for solutions to the environmental risks of today that work both for people and the environments in which they live.”
Image: Solar panels on the side of a housing block. Credit: Pixabay