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38 Degrees Sustainability Approach

38 Degrees mission is to create a fairer, more respectful and more sustainable world. We campaign to support this mission by raising the voice of our supporters and we work in partnership with allies to achieve our aims.

Our Vision

Ensuring environmental, social and economic sustainability lies at the heart of what we do at 38 Degrees and in our work towards a more sustainable country for all.

A sustainable country ensures people a better quality of life, respects the environment around us, and reduces our negative impact on the natural world. In a sustainable country, we take personal responsibility for our impact on the environment, holding big companies and our government to account for their role in protecting our planet and the communities around us.

We believe that by combining our little and large measures together we achieve greater impact towards a sustainable country.

Our Approach

38 Degrees is committed to promoting sustainability through its work improving the quality of life for everyone in the UK improving our impact on the natural world. We have campaigned on sewage, single use plastics, green energy and the cost of living, issues that are important to, and impact, people across the UK.

We operationalise much of our ambition for a more sustainable country through our environmental campaigning work and we also consider the social impact of issues within our campaigns. For example, understanding how the cost of living crisis interplays with energy resources (i.e. oil, gas and renewables) helps us develop campaigns against increased poverty and build a more decarbonised future.

We have been mainstreaming sustainability within our internal structures, operations and external work, including ethical and green criteria for external providers, developing a culture of sustainability throughout the organisation.

Being a diverse, inclusive organisation underpins our sustainability efforts because it enables us to better reflect the voices and needs of our people and the communities we serve – we will be more impactful creating a fairer society by being a more inclusive, more representative organisation that supports the wellness of our people and community.

We won’t stop here, we continually seek improvements within our operations, fundraising, procurement, investments and partnerships, in order to reduce our impact on the environment, conserving energy, reducing waste and bringing positive social value wherever we can.

What we are doing towards a sustainable world

We are now more and more reflective and targeted about how we can reduce our carbon footprint to improve sustainability. We continually look across environmental, social and economic issues for opportunities to create impact. Below are areas that we have and continue to work on:

Our team – We are incorporating environmental and social sustainability through our ways of work and internal policies. Our working policies enable the majority of our team to be hybrid or remote working, so our team can spend less resources travelling. We reduce the resource demands of our office space, whilst ensuring our people can work in ways that suit their lives as well as the business. Our wellness approach includes a 9 day fortnight – this has enabled 38 Degrees to remain productive with fewer sick days, improving staff wellbeing and increasing our effectiveness.

Office – We have intentionally chosen to work in shared office spaces aligned with our sustainability mission and ways of working, working with providers who also set goals focused on reducing their carbon footprint.

Electricity – We continually strive to reduce our energy consumption and select renewable energy sources wherever possible. We have opted for shared office space that is designed to ensure power efficiency from lighting to equipment.

Waste – Focusing on waste reduction enables us all to make impact. Our shared office space encourages this through provision of recycling points on every floor, supporting responsible waste disposal and encouraging circularity.

Community – Our membership to a network of shared office spaces provides access to facilities nationally and globally. This enables us to recruit staff throughout the UK, minimising unnecessary travel and maximising resource efficiency whilst powering our organisation with an inclusive workforce representative of the country we campaign for.

We work to reduce our carbon footprint by encouraging our staff to reduce overall travel and increase sustainable travel choices which means that we avoid travelling by air unless there is no viable alternative. Our team is able to access our shared work spaces wherever available in each geographical location so they can walk, cycle or use public transport.

We also provide a cycle to work scheme which enables those who wish to cycle to work a loan to purchase a bicycle, interest free.

Service providers –We carefully consider the suppliers that we work with, developing steps to ensure they align with our values and commitment towards sustainability and ethical practices. We consider their sustainability approach, commitments and the evidence of how they are working towards their goals.

Being more sustainable is a journey that we are continually working on – we don’t get everything right all the time and trade-offs are inevitable as we balance being able to operate effectively whilst being as sustainable as possible. We continue to question our approaches and ask our suppliers and partners about their sustainability journeys so as to make informed decisions about our choices.

It’s vital that any service we utilise can offer assurances of contributing towards our sustainability goals and we continue to work towards understanding what this looks like. So far we work with:

Amazon web services (AWS) – AWS have set targets for 100% renewable energy by 2025 and heavily invested in renewable energy, wind and solar energy to run their operations. Their cloud-based services have been developed with processors and cooling systems that maximise power and cooling efficiency by 60% less energy consumption also reducing the energy use of their cooling system by 20%.

Office Supplies – Our office and home supplies and equipment are purchased from a range of providers some of whom have a climate friendly pledge which offers options to easily access a range of products with sustainability certifications.

In 2024 we will begin to develop our Sustainability strategy with the Environment Act 2021  in mind, holding the government to account to protect air quality, water, biodiversity, and waste reduction; we are committed to also joining the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) ‘call to action to protect the planet.’

What’s next

Our aim is to set up a sustainability crew to critically review what we are doing, explore how we improve our sustainability mission and outcomes, and to create measurable targets to work towards. We believe that sustainability is everybody’s business which is why we drive our culture and action across the business towards our mission. In 2024 we will:

  • Conduct a materiality assessment to understand the potential environmental, social, and governance risks that the organisation is exposed to, to understand where we focus our efforts, how we set goals and how to achieve them
  • We are developing a sustainability strategy that will link to / integrate with our wider organisational objectives, to interweave sustainability into all we do
  • We will set material, ambitious yet achievable goals to enable us to track our progress, reach our objective of further reducing our environmental impact and maximising our social impact 
  • We will support our internal team to set their own personal goals aligned to our own goals
  • We will continue to strengthen our campaigning on sustainability issues that are important to our community and our country. 

We will provide more detailed goals and actions within our sustainability strategy following completion of our assessment. 

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