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 are looking for more sustainable ways for people to meet their needs and make the link between individual actions and saving wildlife. 

Our commitments

We also apply this to the way we work. We have had a greening programme since the 1990s and now have a corporate environmental management system (EMS). In addition, our workplaces in Wales have gained the Green Dragon stamp of approval for their environmental work. We are rolling this scheme out to other countries. We have an Environmental Policy (see download), which sets out our overall direction. In the next 18 months we’re focusing on 5 key areas:

  • Reducing carbon emissions.
  • Ensuring legal compliance.
  • Reducing water use.
  • Maintaining our recycling rate.
  • Ensuring our purchasing of products like coffee, tea, timber and seafood meets our standards.

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

What we’ve achieved so far

  • We buy our electricity on a green tariff.
  • 24 buildings have solar (photo-voltaic) panels.
  • Wind turbines at 2 reserves and one at our headquarters at Sandy.
  • Ground source heat pumps and air source heat pumps at 4 buildings.
  • Woodchip/pellet boilers at 6 reserves.
  • 95% recycling rate at our HQ, including composting.
  • Video-conferencing units at all our main offices.
  • From a 2007/8 baseline, we reduced our carbon budget emissions by more than 3% each year.
  • An electric car charge point at our HQ with 3 electric vehicles in our fleet.
  • Installing smart meters at our workplaces for energy.
  • Signed up to the Sustainable ® Advertising Mail scheme.
  • Achieved the Soil Association’s Food For Life Award at our cafes and HQ staff restaurant.
  • Our shops sell bird seed from Fair to Nature farms.
  • Switching to paperless HR and Finance systems.
Installation of solar panels on visitor centre roof by Solar Century. Sandwell Valley RSPB reserve.