Sustainability strategy for 6,000 UK sites and buildings


A new ESG strategy aims to improve sustainability practices across 6000 UK sites overseen by a leading facilities management company.

Atlas, a UK facilities management company, will use the FuturePlus platform to manage, measure and improve its social and environmental impact, rolling out best practice and more sustainable products, equipment and processes over 6,000 of its UK sites, including the British Library (pictured). The company’s ambition is to positively impact the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), focusing on how its business activities can benefit both communities and the planet.

Atlas is responsible for keeping corporate headquarters, sporting venues, industrial and manufacturing sites, schools, universities, hotels and retail spaces clean, safe, secure, ventilated and heated. In a move to positively contribute to the built environment sector, Atlas can now implement, track and measure the sustainability of its entire operations, whilst ensuring that every part of its organisation is supported on the road to becoming more responsible.

“Technology, combined with our in-house sustainability expertise, enables us to help people weave sustainability into the fabric of their company and unify all stakeholders to see and achieve their ambitions,” Alexandra Smith, co-founder and partner at FuturePlus, said.

“We now have a great foundation and a clear plan on how to meet these ambitions across our core five themes, tracking and communicating their progress to keep everyone aligned. With governance at the heart of all we do, suppliers, partners, employees, and clients can be sure that Atlas is moving in the right direction with integrity and conviction.” 

A recent report shared by the UN Environment Programme called out the sector for not being on course to reach decarbonisation by 2050. Built environment represents over 33 per cent of global final energy use, generates nearly 40 per cent of global energy-related GHG emissions and consumes 40 per cent of global raw materials – of which 25 per cent is fresh water.  In Europe, it accounts for 40 per cent of energy demand, of which 80 per cent comes from fossil fuels. This makes the sector an area for immediate action, investment, and policies to promote short and long-term energy security.

“We are committed to playing our part in making the planet a better place, just as we want to make buildings better places to be for our customers,” David Tarbuck, Atlas Group marketing and communications director, said.

“We sit in a sector that has high demands on our planet’s resources and historically we know we have contributed to climate change. Therefore, we want to be proactive in addressing the UN SDGs and that’s why we are changing our approach to ESG. 

“FuturePlus has helped us develop a strategy with clear actions on how to implement sustainability across the entire business and the communities we are in. We now understand where we are today versus the UN SDGs, and where we want to get to in the next 24 months.

“Specific things we are looking to manage and improve include transforming our recycling culture, reducing cleaning products that may harm aquamarine life, and implementing more energy-efficient HVAC plans (heating, ventilation and air conditioning). FuturePlus has given us the confidence to communicate about ESG to our employees and suppliers on the measures we are taking to collectively improve our social and environmental impact. Importantly, we are also engaging with our clients to see how we can partner with them to make a bigger impact, with collaboration at the very centre of our approach.”

FuturePlus is helping Atlas supercharge its ESG by tailoring it to meet both business- and sector-specific goals, taking the company on a journey that applies the UN SDGs to real-life processes in a realistic and practical fashion. Atlas can continue to build on its commitment to sustainability by working towards common goals and tracking progress across FuturePlus’ five themes: climate, economic impact, diversity and inclusion, and environmental and social impact.

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