Ash Tree Vets is thrilled to announce that we have achieved the Bronze level accreditation in the Investors in the Environment project.
The Investors in the Environment (iiE) accreditation requires an organisation to provide evidence that it has met a range of pre-defined criteria, set environmental impact related targets, completed tasks which demonstrate its commitment to improving its environmental performance and enhanced the community in which it operates. The evidence is presented at an annual audit for evaluation and this report provides feedback on the organisation’s performance as well as offering advice on next steps for continued improvement.
"As a practice full of animal lovers, for many of us this love extends to all of nature and the great outdoors. A number of our team members are really passionate about the environment and how to reduce thier own personal impacts.
Health care in human medicine and in the veterinary sector has a huge environmental footprint for many reasons. As part of the management team, I felt it was really important to engage in making the practice more sustainable not only because it is the right way forward, but also for our team's job satisfaction so they know that we are doing everything we can to practice with lower impacts.
We chose to be part of the Investors in the Environment scheme as it helped us create really clear goals and targets so that we could see what impact our changes were having. We are very proud to have reached the first level of accreditation and are looking forward to doing more over the next 12 months."
Nicole Dyer - Clinical Director and Green Champion
Our Green Team has worked tirelessly to ensure we make real progress toward reaching our goals.
We have actioned many efforts such as;
- Creating an environmental policy available to staff and clients
- We have tracked our key resource usage taking monthly electricity, gas, water, and isoflurane measurements and introducing actions to reduce use and waste production.
- Our main site had all its lighting changed to highly energy efficient LED’s.
- We have a newly created focus group to discuss different anaesthetic and analgesia techniques that may reduce isoflurane use.
- We adopted an alcohol based surgical scrub technique saving water.
- We have increased our on-site recycling and implemented the use of a number of teracycle schemes for hard to recycle plastics. One of these we operate as a ‘take back scheme’ allowing owners to bring back any hard to recycle plastic blister packs from their pets dispensed medication.
- We have a fabulous compost bin for food waste (which is now a wonderful habitat for some happy worms!).
- Our administration team put in place a paperless initiative within the office - purchase ledger documents have been made digital and statements are now sent to clients via email when possible massively reducing the amount of paper used.
- We increased our biodiversity at our Harborough site with our garden project - we took a barren strip of land in the car park and planted pollinator friendly flowers that were blooming between April - October 2021. This attracted lots of insect wildlife including, bees, hoverfly, butterflies and many caterpillars!
- We engaged the team to participate in multiple 'environmental calendar events' e.g.; we shared vegan recipes for Veganuary, started a book swap library in aid of 'Earth Hour', shared plastic reduction tips for Plastic Free July and the practice also changed to glass bottle milk deliveries starting from July 2021.
- We used the data gathered from tracking our resource use to calculate what we can of our carbon footprint and managed to reduce this by approximately 4.5 tonnes CO2 equivalent!
A big thank you to our Green Team members:
- Nicole Dyer
- Lucy Clarke
- Stella Coulson
- Claire Drew
- Mel Gunn
- Louise Haigh
- Liz Mears
- Jo Parish
We can't wait to see what impact we can make in the next year!