Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) used a tiny train and a floral display as part of a display at London Blackfriars railway station to highlight their work on improving biodiversity across their rail network. IEMA's Tom Pashby reports.

The train operating company Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) – the UK’s largest – is a corporate member of IEMA and served 179 million passenger journeys in 2021/2022.

In its 2022 sustainability report released in early 2023, the company said it had “been focusing on reducing our carbon footprint and improving biodiversity.”

Jason Brooker, head of sustainability at GTR, said: “We're very proud to be a corporate member of IEMA. We are going to be working with them very very soon on developments and training for our environment champions.”

He was speaking on the terrace at London Blackfriars where GTR had installed a floral display, which the company said was designed to “bring together the woodland feeling of overgrown materials coupled with the new energy of spring, drawing attention to often overlooked and disregarded spaces.”

Jason said: “I myself was an environment champion. So I first started in the ticket office in Polgate many, many years ago, where I first heard about IEMA and that’s where I got involved.”

In its sustainability report, GTR said it is working with Network Rail to assess the potential impact of extreme weather on its operations and had already started adapting its infrastructure following the overheating of railways and electricity surges which took place in 2020.

GTR said it is committed to net zero by 2045, a zero-emission bus fleet by 2035, and had already reduced its total carbon emissions from Scope 1 and 2 emissions from 220,563 tonnes in 2019/2020 down to 163,880 in 2021/2022.

Photo of Tom P
Tom Pashby

Digital Journalist, IEMA

Tom Pashby is a Digital Journalist at IEMA, working alongside the Head of Media Abigail Simmons, and the Senior Media Officer Tim Farmer.

Alongside their work for IEMA, Tom is currently studying part-time for an NCTJ Diploma in Journalism with PA Training, and freelances as a writer and editor. They have written about the climate emergency, LGBTQIA+ rights and the UK constitution for publications including the Times, the i newspaper, Metro, PinkNews and the Ecologist.