31.05.24 Business

Climate Action Programme Case Study: Greenhouse Communications

In this climate action case study, Emily Greenwood, Operations and Business Support Manager at Greenhouse Communications shares her insights into how they are strengthening their commitment to being a force for good. 

Walking the talk

Greenhouse Communications was founded in 2007, with a mission to work with pioneers and entrepreneurs to create positive social and environmental change.

So, when B-Corp launched in 2016, to help businesses become a force for good, Greenhouse’s founder, Anna Guyer, took the first opportunity to get Greenhouse certified.

In 2017, we became one of the first B-Corps in the UK, and at the end of last year, we re-certified for a third time. Being a B-Corp has become integral to who we are as an agency, guiding every aspect of our business, from staff well-being to how we assess our environmental impact.  

More recently, we have chosen to demonstrate our long-term commitment to creating positive environmental change, by setting ambitious net-zero targets with the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi). SBTi is aligned with the latest climate science, and it is an extremely robust process that holds businesses accountable for reducing their environmental impact.

In November last year, our near and long-term targets were verified, demonstrating to our employees, clients, and suppliers, that we are committed to leading and supporting climate action with integrity.  

Communicating climate action

As an environmental communications agency, we are fortunate to have a brilliant team who are already so engaged with climate action. However, we recognise that when it comes to certain activities or initiatives, such as setting our science-based targets, the level of knowledge can vary, and we need to take the time to bring everyone on the journey with us.

For example, launching our science-based targets at an all-team meeting with an open Q&A. We then followed up with resources in our digital resource “Knowledge Hub” as well as the introduction of our “Green Team”, to give everyone the opportunity to learn what SBTi targets mean for us as a business, and for their work at Greenhouse.    

Our Green Team help us effectively communicate the ‘why’ behind our decision-making, and embed the new policies and processes we are rolling out to meet our SBTi targets. For instance, we have successfully launched a new Sustainable Travel Policy, which includes a journey assessment and slow-travel criteria, guidance for sustainable hotel chains, and ethical meal practises.  

Understanding our impact

While B-Corp has given us a useful environmental assessment framework to work with, we refined our reporting methods to meet the requirements of the SBTi. As you would expect, SBTi target submission was a complex process, but it was particularly challenging for us, being new to the process.

We engaged an external consultant to help pull together the information from across the business, and the whole process took about 12 months, including a 3-month wait for verification. We’ve also worked with our environmental consultants to build a robust environmental management system (EMS).  

Since implementing our EMS, we’ve become IS014001 certified which provides us with a framework to help minimise negative impacts on the environment through better management control, and ultimately work towards our science-based net-zero targets.

We are already seeing the impact, through changes to internal systems, such as our heating usage. We implemented a new policy, which has resulted in a 25% reduction in our use of natural gases in the most recent winter compared to the previous year, a difference of nearly 1000kwh. 

Top tips

  • Engage your leadership team – make sure your initiatives are put at the top of their agenda and they will make the investment required. Put things on their radar as early as possible, as change takes time. Whether it’s getting your SBTi targets verified or implementing interventions to drive down emissions – work in this space will often take longer than you think. 
  • Collaborate – if you’re the one leading on climate initiatives, work with your wider team. Start open conversations with relevant members of your team, so that you get the support you need and have feedback at every step of the way. 
  • Understand where you have gaps – identify the systems you need early on to accelerate action down the line and recognise where you need to upskill yourself. 

Greenhouse Communications is a member of our Climate Leaders Group. Find out more about their mission to create positive social and environmental change.

Through our Climate Action Programme collaboration with the City Centre and Redcliffe & Temple Business Improvement Districts, we’re keen to showcase climate progress in this area of the city and create more opportunities for businesses to learn from one another.

If you have an initiative or project we can shout about, please do get in touch with bex@bristolclimatenature.org.


Find out more about the Climate Action Programme

Share to

Greenhouse Communications Team Photo