Employees at Knight Frank’s two Yorkshire offices have pledged alongside eight other offices countrywide to reduce single use plastics and start to become plastic free.
The global property consultancy company, which employs 2,000 people across the UK including in Sheffield and Leeds, has shown its credentials as a responsible business by agreeing to remove disposable single use plastic from its UK business, significantly reducing its plastic footprint and reliance on plastic products and to dispose of unwanted plastic responsibly.
It has partnered with marine conservation charity Surfers Against Sewage and started a UK-wide initiative to become the first property agent to be awarded the Plastic Free Business accreditation from the action group within three months.
Every UK based Knight Frank employee has been given a reusable and fully recyclable metal water bottle – which has the potential to remove 350,000 plastic bottles from waste circulation over the next 12 months.
Rebecca Schofield, partner at Knight Frank in Sheffield and board director of the company’s KF X Social Impact Board, said: “Knight Frank has made a commitment to reduce the harm posed by discarded single-use plastics, both in our UK business and by influencing the personal choices of our employees.
“The environment, and how we reduce both our negative impact on the natural environment and our consumption of resources, is a key part of being a responsible business.
“This scheme has been raised and supported by employees to support the elimination of single use plastics across the country.
“The average UK adult uses 175 plastic water bottles a year – and with over 2,000 employees, our gift of a recyclable metal water bottle to employees has the potential to remove 350,000 plastic bottles from waste circulation over the next 12 months.
“Also, the Sheffield office has pledged not to use plastic milk cartons and these are being replaced with glass. We have a milkman booked in.”
The primary aims of the initiative are to remove disposable single use plastic from its UK business, significantly reduce Knight Frank’s plastic footprint and reliance on plastic products and to dispose of unwanted plastic responsibly.
Knight Frank has already replaced nearly all its in house café packaging with 100% compostable and eco-friendly vegware; appointed a waste broker to maximise waste diversion away from landfill into waste to energy; refined its stationery list prioritising reusable / refillable items or products with a higher recycling content and stopped using of laminates on the majority of our marketing materials.
Surfers Against Sewage is widely recognised as one of the UK’s leading marine conservation charities. Surfers Against Sewage deals with a wide spectrum of marine conservation issues from marine litter to climate change.
Hugo Tagholm, CEO of the Surfers Against Sewage, said: “I’m delighted that Knight Frank has joined the Plastic Free Business initiative and are taking steps to reduce their plastic footprint to protect the environment. The Plastic Free Communities movement has captured hearts and minds across the nation, and businesses are playing a vital part in driving change. We can all be ocean activists by saying no to avoidable plastics.”
Acting as a responsible business forms an integral part of Knight Frank’s business and corporate strategy and includes its biannual October Day of Giving, where teams around the world take part in charity fundraising events. The last event in October 2017 raised more than £400,000 for chosen charities and 2019 Day of Giving is due to happen later this year.