New green goals to save RBS £200 million

11th April 2012

Related Topics

Related tags

  • Mitigation ,
  • Management/saving ,
  • Disposal ,
  • Recycling



Pledges to halve its paper use and cut business travel are among new environmental targets announced by UK bank RBS that will save it £200 million by 2020

The RBS Group also aims to cut energy use across its global operations by 15% over the next two years, alongside commitments on reducing water consumption by 12% and diverting a further 15% of waste from landfill.

In addition, RBS says it increase the proportion of waste it recycles to 75% by 2012, up from 50% in 2010, and ensure that all the paper it uses is at least 85% recycled or from certified sustainable sources.

The group has also set two longer-term targets: to reduce by 50%, on 2011 figures, the amount of paper it uses – both internally and in mailings to its 30 million customers – and the amount of carbon emissions the group creates through business travel.

New technologies, particularly communications software will play an important role in meeting the new targets and saving costs. In particular, the bank highlights virtual meeting technologies, which it commits to ensuring all of its 150,000 staff has access to by 2014. According to the firm, setting up one regular virtual briefing for executives saved the bank 24,000 air miles in 2011, the equivalent of 72 tonnes of CO2.

Electronic communications will also play an important role in meeting its paper reduction targets, with the bank committing to replacing traditional paper letters with emails, for example.

To meet its energy-efficiency goals, RBS plans to upgrade its existing building management systems, to improve the energy performance of its offices.

In total, the group believes that meeting the new targets will save £200 million by 2020.

Sefton Laing, head of environment at RBS Group, said: “The targets will make a huge difference to the way we run our business. We believe we now have some of the most comprehensive targets in financial services and we’re using ideas from customers and employees to achieve, and hopefully exceed them.”

Meanwhile the group’s chief executive, Stephen Hester, said that large companies had a duty to manage their carbon footprints.


Subscribe to IEMA's newsletters to receive timely articles, expert opinions, event announcements, and much more, directly in your inbox.

Transform articles

A social conscience

With a Taskforce on Inequality and Social-related Financial Disclosures in the pipeline, Beth Knight talks to Chris Seekings about increased recognition of social sustainability

6th June 2024

Read more

Disinformation about the impossibility of averting the climate crisis is part of an alarming turn in denialist tactics, writes David Burrows

6th June 2024

Read more

David Symons, FIEMA, director of sustainability at WSP, and IEMA’s Lesley Wilson, tell Chris Seekings why a growing number of organisations are turning to nature-based solutions to meet their climate goals

6th June 2024

Read more

A system-level review is needed to deliver a large-scale programme of retrofit for existing buildings. Failure to do so will risk missing net-zero targets, argues Amanda Williams

31st May 2024

Read more

Chris Seekings reports from a webinar helping sustainability professionals to use standards effectively

31st May 2024

Read more

Although many organisations focus on scope 1 and 2 emissions, it is vital to factor in scope 3 emissions and use their footprint to drive business change

31st May 2024

Read more

IEMA submits response to the Future Homes Standard consultation

31st May 2024

Read more

What is the role for nature in the Climate Change Act? Sophie Mairesse reports

20th May 2024

Read more

Media enquires

Looking for an expert to speak at an event or comment on an item in the news?

Find an expert

IEMA Cookie Notice

Clicking the ‘Accept all’ button means you are accepting analytics and third-party cookies. Our website uses necessary cookies which are required in order to make our website work. In addition to these, we use analytics and third-party cookies to optimise site functionality and give you the best possible experience. To control which cookies are set, click ‘Settings’. To learn more about cookies, how we use them on our website and how to change your cookie settings please view our cookie policy.

Manage cookie settings

Our use of cookies

You can learn more detailed information in our cookie policy.

Some cookies are essential, but non-essential cookies help us to improve the experience on our site by providing insights into how the site is being used. To maintain privacy management, this relies on cookie identifiers. Resetting or deleting your browser cookies will reset these preferences.

Essential cookies

These are cookies that are required for the operation of our website. They include, for example, cookies that enable you to log into secure areas of our website.

Analytics cookies

These cookies allow us to recognise and count the number of visitors to our website and to see how visitors move around our website when they are using it. This helps us to improve the way our website works.

Advertising cookies

These cookies allow us to tailor advertising to you based on your interests. If you do not accept these cookies, you will still see adverts, but these will be more generic.

Save and close