Triodos Bank’s largest positive impact on the environment comes from financing entrepreneurs and enterprises developing innovative ways to combat climate change.
But the organisation also has a responsibility for its own environmental impact as an institution.
Achievements in 2011
In 2011 Triodos Bank continued to focus on reducing paper usage, reducing energy consumption and developing a new Environmental Management System (EMS) manual to increase the system’s effectiveness.
Examples of initiatives to reduce Triodos Bank’s environmental footprint included the introduction of a paperless human resources (HR) communications system in the Belgian office, enabling co-workers to receive and manage HR information, such as pay slips and holiday forms, electronically. While Spanish customers now receive account information via the internet instead of by post. The branch estimates this will reduce paper consumption by approximately 80% in 2012.
Triodos Bank aims to use 100% green energy to power all its offices. Where it starts working in a new office, which doesn’t already use a green energy supplier, it converts to green energy as quickly as possible. To reduce the energy consumption of its data centre and IT operations Triodos Bank started a pilot with ‘thin clients’ to reduce its energy usage during the year. This new technology saves 90% of the energy use of conventional computers, and will be adopted by the UK office when it moves to a new building early in 2012.
Triodos Bank’s policy is to encourage co-workers to travel to and from work using the most environmentally-friendly option available.
Co-workers use public transport for travel whenever possible, but when travel by car is essential Triodos Bank buys company cars with a high environmental performance.
In addition, Triodos Bank in The Netherlands owns an electric car for co-worker journeys of up to 70 kms. It also leases two electric cars and has installed charging points for visitors and co-workers using electric vehicles.
Triodos Bank aims to reduce the environmental footprint of its paper usage and printing. Where possible, it uses recycled paper and environmentally sound printing processes and materials, such as waterless printing and vegetable inks. Triodos Bank encourages its customers to communicate with it in an environmentally-friendly way (by telephone, e-mail or the internet); expanding its online product offering, and improving the efficiency of opening accounts online, are just two examples.
Climate Neutral operations
Triodos Bank offsets 100% of its CO2 emissions. Greenhouse gas emissions are reduced in three distinct steps: firstly, via energy saving; secondly, essential energy consumption is sourced from renewable suppliers, where possible; and finally, any remaining CO2 emissions are compensated.