Environmental sustainability – highest ever rating for Unipart Logistics

Unipart employee using the Unipart Way to improve environmental sustainability.21 December 2020 – Unipart Logistics has achieved a five-star rating from the British Safety Council for its commitment to environmental sustainability. It scored over 95% in the British Safety Council Five Star Environmental Sustainability Audit – its highest ever rating.

The British Safety Council Five Star Environmental Audit is an internationally recognised audit process used by leading organisations to compare their environmental performance against best practice and current trends.

It provides an external, independent assessment of the environmental sustainability management systems and the effectiveness of their implementation at strategic, tactical and operational levels.

The report stated that Unipart Logistics is “undoubtedly committed to the long-term strategy and demonstrated their ongoing commitment to sustainability improvement programmes”.

Auditors cited the strength of Unipart Logistics’ overall working culture saying it has led to ongoing environmental and sustainability improvement programmes, and said that “Unipart Logistics has excellent standards, which are at best practice in many areas”.

Removing plastic

Elimination of single use plastic has been a strong focus for Unipart Logistics. Over 260 tonnes of single use plastic have been removed from its supply chains. That includes over 400,000 plastic cups and 32,500 plastic bottles that were replaced with reusable items.

Unipart Logistics also achieved continued reduction of CO2 emissions and water consumption, and Unipart teams have worked with suppliers to implement sustainable packaging solutions. This included recycling incoming waste material such as cardboard as packaging. Unipart Logistics achieved a 97% target for recycled waste ensuring that no waste is sent to landfill.

An important element of Unipart Logistics’ sustainability programme is its continued focus on sustainability in employee engagement programmes. Unipart achieved some of its highest employee engagement scores in its 2020 survey in which continued training plays a pivotal role.

Training programmes

Environmental sustainability has been embedded across all internal training programmes, and environmental coordinators receive ongoing personal development including ISO14001 auditor training and IEMA Environmental Management training.

Training is supported by a wide range of communication programmes including environmental webinars, roadshows for National Recycling and World Environment days, regular project updates and news items on internal news channels. ‘Green Teams’ have been established in all sites to promote and support sites with sustainable solutions.

Unipart’s unique Digital Communication Cells have been central to sharing sustainability best practice across the company.

Digital Communication Cells are powerful information portals that provide teams with up-to-the minute business data vital for day-to-day activity. They make it possible for teams to meet virtually anywhere across the globe, and review performance data in real time, working together to solve problems, and access important news and information.

Unipart Logistics Operations Director Andy Pyne said the five-star rating can be attributed to the many Unipart employees who have worked in problem solving teams using the tools and techniques of The Unipart Way to find innovative solutions to environmental problems.

“Across Unipart Group, the culture of working together to solve problems, share ideas and develop innovative solutions has been an important platform for our environmental sustainability programme. Although the pandemic has changed the way in which we’re working on sites, and kept others working from home, the strength of that culture has continued,” he said.

“We’ve benefitted from the use of digital tools such as the Digital Communication Cell which enabled teams to stay in contact regardless of where they are in the world and to share data in real time. That’s been particularly relevant in terms of our environmental sustainability in that great ideas developed in one site can be shared and implemented very quickly across the organisation globally.

“It is a tribute to our people that, during a time when they have dealt with such fast-paced change and adaptation to stay safe, they have continued to focus on improving environmental sustainability and delivering the outstanding results that have been recognised in this audit.”