Mitie has announced its roadmap to achieve a net zero estate by 2025.
The facilities management provider currently has a portfolio of more than 50 sites across the UK, and pledges to have four net zero properties by the end of the financial year 2022, and thereafter an additional 14 net zero sites every year to reach a fully decarbonised estate by 2025.
The commitment is part of Mitie’s Plan Zero pledge to use its expertise in facilities and energy management to achieve net zero carbon for its operational emissions by 2025.
The initial four sites – a mixture of offices and warehouses located in Birmingham, Glasgow, Nottingham, and East Hampshire – will attain net zero carbon emissions by ensuring that only renewable electricity is used and by replacing the gas heating systems now in use at three of the sites with heat pumps.
As each property will require a slightly different approach to decarbonise, these sites will be used as opportunities to develop best practices that can be applied to the remainder of Mitie’s buildings and shared with clients.
Although removing gas heating systems and switching to renewable energy will result in Mitie decarbonising its sites, the business is taking the commitment further by using its in-house energy management and project knowledge to cut the total amount of energy it uses. This will include improving the energy efficiency of its sites to lower its environmental impact. Mitie has already carried out surveys of its entire estate to identify opportunities to render buildings more energy efficient, for example, by upgrading to LED lighting, improving building insulation, and replacing old heating and cooling systems with more efficient equipment.
Mitie will also roll out a number of energy optimisation initiatives across its portfolio. As well as adjusting settings on heating and cooling systems, Mitie has established a company-wide Carbon Conscious Comfort Policy, setting the optimum temperature and lighting levels that offer the best balance between employees’ health and wellbeing and cutting energy use.
Through all these changes Mitie expects to save at least 120,000 kWh of energy each year – equating to more than 26 tonnes of carbon dioxide.
Simon King, Mitie’s director of sustainability and social value, said: “While there is often a lot of focus on the energy use of new buildings, given that 80 per cent of the sites that will be in use in 2050 have already built, the decarbonisation and retrofitting of existing commercial properties will be essential to helping the UK meet its net zero targets. We’re proud to be leading by example not only with our commitment to have a fully net zero estate, but also by using our building management and sustainability expertise to cut the amount of energy we use in the first place.”
Mitie supports clients to use less energy and reduce their carbon footprint through its ‘A to E’ methodology. The company said that by using its expertise in renewable energy, sustainability, and efficient buildings, it has helped its customers to save more than 353,000 tonnes of carbon over the past 10 years through energy optimisations and decarbonisation solutions.
The company said its environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) performance was ranked number one out of all ranked business support services companies globally in Sustainalytics’ January 2021 report.
Image credit | Mitie