Walking the Walk
Beyond Neutral® is committed to minimizing its greenhouse and environmental impacts and playing a role in a sustainable society. It takes a comprehensive approach to achieving this; an approach which can easily be replicated by business and individuals. Beyond Neutral® has a genuine commitment to sustainability (environmental, social and economic) and a belief in the intrinsic value of ecosystems, diversity and community.
Using 100% accredited GreenPowermeans as many units of accredited new renewable electricity are purchased as are used in our operations. This offsets those emissions associated with our internal electricity use which would have been generated if the electricity had been sourced only from the “black energy” grid, as well as also playing a part in supporting Australia’s renewable energy industry.
Vehicle emissions of the company and our staff have in the past been offset through GreenFleet (a previously Australian Government accredited Greenhouse Friendly™ offset provider). Given the current lack of available accreditation under the National Carbon Offset Standard for offset companies, Beyond Neutral® is maintaining a watching brief until offset products are available.
Emissions from transport are reduced by the use of E10 ULP fuel where available and avoided through the extensive use of teleconferencing and email, as well as by minimizing work related travel. Beyond Neutral® is willing to use a flexible, distributed model for its working arrangements to enable further reductions in fuel use and emissions. Public transport is used when feasible. Air travel is offset using accredited offset programs whenever available.
Beyond Neutral®’s printed material is printed on 100% post consumer recycled, process chlorine free, carbon neutral (since January 2009), Forest Stewardship Council Chain of Custody (FSC CoC) certified paper stock using soy based inks. In-office printing uses 100% post consumer recycled paper, the use of which is minimised through double sided printing and computer based editing as standard. Electronic communication such as email and PDF is used extensively.
Waste Management and Recycling
Beyond Neutral® recycles all recyclable waste. Our office composts or diverts to worm farm/poultry all suitable food and other organic waste (such as shredded paper) which is then used in the production of organically grown fruit, vegetables and eggs. Office equipment is repaired where possible and obsolescent equipment is offered to appropriate charities/organisations for reconditioning and subsequent use or sale.
The office incorporates many energy efficiency concepts into its design and operation.
The building uses ceiling, wall and slab insulation combined with passive solar features to avoid the need for air conditioning in summer and to maximise the solar gain (heating) achieved in winter. The building’s orientation and passive solar design allows the sun to penetrate into its interior during the winter months while excluding the sun from the interior during summer. Double glazing is used to trap heat in the building during winter while the design ensures excellent cross-flow ventilation during summer nights, removing the day’s built up thermal load and helping to maintain comfortable interior temperatures.
Solar hot water is used with GreenPower to produce emission free hot water, with the system producing free hot water for the majority of the year.
Beyond Neutral® supports local and national charities and its surrounding community, and it is active in attempts to improve the conditions of the community within which it is located. Previous examples of this include support for the ACT PCYC Kidsmart handbook, the Canberra Special Children’s Christmas Party and Earth Hour.