Chaffinch Fringilla coelebs, feeding from hanging bird table in garden

Approach to environmental impacts

The RSPB works to save birds and other wildlife here in the UK and abroad. Nature is in trouble and we recognise that this is largely due to the rate at which we’re using up resources.

The RSPB’s approach to its own environmental impacts

We’re asking people to find more sustainable ways to meet their needs to help them make the link between their individual actions and saving wildlife.

Our commitments

We apply this to the way we work too. We’ve had a greening programme since the 1990s and now have a corporate environmental management system (EMS). In addition, our workplaces in Wales and Scotland and our UKHQ have gained the Green Dragon stamp of approval for their environmental work. We’re rolling this scheme out to other areas. Download and read our Environmental Policy, which sets out our overall direction. We’re focusing on these key areas:

  • Reducing carbon emissions
  • Ensuring legal compliance
  • Maintaining our recycling rate
  • Ensuring our purchasing of products like coffee, tea, timber and seafood meets our standards
  • Eliminating unnecessary single-use plastics and other plastics in our operations

We've an environmental programme covering the whole of the RSPB, which will help us achieve these objectives.

What we’ve achieved so far

  • On target to reduce our carbon budget emissions by 30% between 2010/11 and 2020/21
  • 30+ buildings have solar (photo-voltaic) panels
  • Wind turbines at two reserves and one 0.8 MW at our headquarters at Sandy
  • Woodchip/pellet boilers at seven reserves
  • 86% recycling rate at our HQ, including composting on site
  • Certification of our woodland sites by UK Woodland Assurance Scheme, so we can now sell FSC certified timber
  • Electric car charge points at our HQ with three electric vehicles in our fleet
  • Elimination of plastic from our membership packs and parcels
  • Bringing chocolate from Gola forest to our shops - eat chocolate and save a rainforest
  • Our cafes have achieved the Soil Association’s Food For Life Award
  • All RSPB bird seed is from Fair to Nature farms – doubly good for wildlife
  • Shifting courses online, such as our RSPB induction, and greatly increasing the number of courses available as online modules, reducing the need to travel
  • Switching to paperless HR and Finance systems
Installation of solar panels on visitor centre roof by Solar Century. Sandwell Valley RSPB reserve.