A City firm which prevented food waste by delivering 80,000 meals to families in need during the pandemic is among the winners in London’s top environmental awards.
Global investment management giant Barings was recognised in the Clean City Awards, run by the City of London Corporation to celebrate Square Mile organisations leading the way on sustainability.
Also praised for cutting carbon emissions, reducing single-use plastic and improving air quality were business, shopping and leisure neighbourhood Broadgate and law firms Eversheds Sutherland and Charles Russell Speechlys.
The gongs were handed out by City of London Alderman Sir Andrew Parmley in a ceremony at The Mansion House on Wednesday April 30.
Chairman of the City of London Corporation’s Port Heath and Environmental Services Committee, Keith Bottomley, said: “It is heartening to see that the turbulence of the pandemic did not shake our focus on tackling the biggest challenge facing all of us – climate change.
“The award winners deserve much praise for finding innovative and creative ways to cut emissions, reduce waste and improve air quality, during what has been an extraordinarily difficult time for all businesses.
“Their efforts, and those of all the companies shortlisted, demonstrate that as businesses big and small and as individuals, we all have our part to play in protecting the environment.”
Barings won the Resource and Circular Economy award, recognising firms for recycling, reusing and reducing waste; and the Chairman’s Cup for large sites, for efforts to deliver a resilient post-COVID recovery.
It delivered 80,000 meals to children, families and homeless people during the pandemic, using food that would otherwise have gone to waste, and has cut food waste by measures including baking its own bread and growing fruit and herbs.
Barings Head of Corporate Services EMEA, Mark Williams, said: “We strive to act responsibly today in order to help deliver a sustainable tomorrow. We are deliberate in our direction, partnerships and decision-making to achieve long-term, lasting change. Barings has committed to achieving Net Zero in our operations by 2030.
“While this is an ongoing effort, winning these awards is a great honour which recognises our hard work over the last four years and gives us confidence that we’re moving in the right direction. We hope it will encourage others to keep striving to make a difference and highlight the positive impact we in the City can make within the communities in which we live and work.”
Broadgate claimed the prize in the Air Quality and Climate Action category and the Chairman’s Cup for facilities management. It was praised for going ‘fossil fuel-free’ in its cleaning and landscaping operations and for sourcing all its gas and electricity from renewable sources.
Broadgate Estate Director, Neil Carter, said: “Broadgate is a long-standing supporter of the Clean City Awards, and the team are delighted to have been selected as a winner this year. The awards are the perfect opportunity to publicly demonstrate our commitment to sustainable working practices and public realm excellence.”
The awards were also an opportunity to recognise the hard work of street sweepers and operatives who collect waste, recycling and keep the City streets clean throughout the year.
The City Corporation’s Climate Action Strategy commits it to achieving net zero carbon for its own operations by 2027 and across its investments and supply chain by 2040; and to support the achievement of net zero for the Square Mile by 2040.
The Square Mile’s governing body also protects 11,000 acres of green space in and around London including Hampstead Heath and Epping Forest, which remove an estimated 16,000 tonnes of CO2 from the atmosphere every year, equivalent to 44 percent of its annual carbon footprint.