WESTCOAST ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY
Westcoast are committed to being a good corporate citizen and to that end are supporting the UN Global Goals.
Goal 12 includes a number of targets that are relevant to Westcoast’s business, including:
- Sustainable use of natural resources
- Responsible management of waste
- Substantially reduce waste generation
- Adopt sustainability practices and reporting
The initiatives and focus are led by Alex Tatham, Managing Director, and Andy Newberry, Operations Director, on behalf of a supportive Board of Directors. Westcoast are committed to adding net zero carbon to the carbon the company directly controls by 2035 as well as extoling best practice in the various aspects of the business. It is developing a Carbon Action Programme with Energy and Carbon Management Ltd and have reported the first set of SECR (Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting) in the annual 2020 financial statements providing a benchmark from which to improve.
The business recognises that its environmental initiatives fall into 5 categories:
1. Packaging – responsible use and recycling
2. Energy consumption and use at Westcoast facilities
3. Fuel use in the delivery of Westcoast products – largely outsourced to delivery companies
4. Recycling and secure disposal of used products
5. Employee Initiatives
Finally, much of the environmental impact emanates from the OEM suppliers with which Westcoast partner. Westcoast are committed to working with all major suppliers to help reduce their own carbon (scope 3) emissions and to promote their most environmentally friendly products and initiatives (eg HP Amplify Impact). All Westcoast’s major suppliers must have their own environmental and sustainability initiatives.
Specific projects where Westcoast have worked on the environmental improvements are as follows:
As part of the ongoing operations, all Warehouse and office locations have dedicated waste recycling programs that cover a wide range of product, packaging, and waste products.
1. Reuse of pallets
2. Wood recycling
3. Plastics in various forms
Where a PDI or configuration service requires the product to be unpacked and then repackaged, every effort is used to reuse existing packaging as far as is possible.
This is particularly the case where configuration services have been commissioned for Westcoast supplied products requiring the goods to be unpacked and then subsequently repacked. In such cases protective wrappings may need to be disposed of, however cartons will be re-used wherever possible.
Westcoast work with customers to both reduce the volume of packaging – eg removing protective packaging at Westcoast warehouses and delivering to site with minimal packaging. In some cases, where protection is required, packaging is removed before installation and returned to Westcoast for ethical and audited disposal/recycling.
Specialist packaging has been developed with the help of retailers and utilised to improve shrinkage for the customer using more environmentally friendly products.
2. Energy Consumption & Use
Carbon neutral utility usage cross all facilities
Westcoast has actively negotiated with its utility energy suppliers to provide carbon neutral supplies across all the group companies.
Westcoast have further invested in large scale solar power generation to supplement the purchase of offsite ‘green energy’. An example of onsite generation of power is at Westcoast’s large Andover site with PV (photo-voltaic) panels installed on the roof of the facility. This is equivalent to 300 kwh per day, enough to power 20 homes. Excess power is exported to the National Grid when available.
Green energy is an ongoing initiative across the company with further PV projects planned.
Air source heat pumps have been linked to the power grid to utilise Westcoast’s green energy for the heating of office spaces at all office locations.
3. Fuel Use for Storage & Deliveries
Large scale courier and carrier fuel usage
Westcoast group is committed to long term environmental improvements through both its downstream and upstream supply chain.
Westcoast has worked alongside its partner couriers to ensure that each has a green energy policy, along with measurable green energy targets and objectives that can be measured and reported against.
Use of electric delivery vehicles in conurbations where available is encouraged.
Westcoast is able to consolidate orders for individual post codes to improve both delivery cost and reduce frequency. This works well for print consumables but is also applied to any product set from a single warehouse as agreed with each customer.
3rd Party Logistics (3PL) Services
Westcoast have successfully implemented 3PL solutions for a wide range of product lines and customers including IT hardware, print consumables, print hardware, retail fulfilment as well as other lines of business unrelated to Westcoast’s core business (eg domestic beauty products, lawnmowers) with a net reduction of 50% in the customer’s overall costs including their own environmental impact.
Such projects together with increased use of drop-shipments or all customers have enabled a significant reduction in multiple transportation transactions from Westcoast’s distribution bases cutting out the double handling of shipments from a distribution centre to an end business or individual consumer user.
As a result of the WEE regulations, Westcoast have actively used the services of our own internal recycling company called WAM , Westcoast asset management, to facilitate the disposal and recycle of electronic goods. This has resulted in an environmental impact reduction, which has a total gain to our environment by recycling any products deemed to be fit to meet the WEEE regulations.
Westcoast have also partnered with 3 external businesses to offer full IT Asset Disposal services for customers for mobile phones (TechSmart); PC’s (Greensafe) and Servers (HPFS) .
5. Employee Initiatives
Energy efficient communications
With the changes in working from home requirements, together with an increase in remote working overall, Westcoast have taken on board the need for effective and efficient communications which has resulted in the increased environmental benefit of reducing travel to customer/supplier sites. Widescale use of Microsoft Teams and other VOIP software has been adopted across all group companies.
Cycle to work scheme
Westcoast actively support the cycle to work scheme as made available via the UK government. Providing specific facilities for all personnel to cycle to work, including shelters and shower facilities within our sites, thus reducing carbon emissions from fossil fuel products.
Electric car charging
Westcoast actively promote electric car usage with the provision of car charging points as can be found at Andover and other sites. All employees are actively encouraged to use electric cars in when travelling.
Trees for Cities
Westcoast support a UK charity committed to planting trees in urban areas. Employees are encouraged to get involved in tree-planting days (eg Prospect Park in Reading).