Overview

Helical has a duty to care for the environment, which leads us to constantly seek innovative ways in which we can improve our performance with regards to sustainable consumption and resource use. We also believe there are business benefits in doing so through increased ability to secure planning consent, improved marketability of assets to prospective tenants and reduced operating costs of assets.

Our high-level corporate commitment to environmental issues is outlined in the Group’s Environmental Policy which can be found on this website. The Policy details our commitments across a range of impact areas and our development and property management activities.

Helical has set itself 31 targets for 2017-18 to guide the Environmental element of its Corporate Responsibility programme over the following 12 months. These targets addressed a range of impacts arising from our development and property management activities, including resource use and waste production, pollution, biodiversity, tenant engagement, flood risk and sustainable design and construction. A full list of these targets can be found on this website.

ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT

We recognise our responsibility to reduce any adverse environmental impacts arising from our business activities and we work within existing regulatory frameworks to comply with all relevant environmental legislation as a minimum through our operations. Our overall goal is to operate in an environmentally sustainable manner throughout our activities

Our response to environmental issues is practical and pragmatic and reflects our desire to be a responsive, flexible and collaborative partner and landlord. The management system has been developed specifically to reflect the flexibility of Helical’s business model.

Key elements of our Environmental Management System (EMS) include:

  • Environmental and Corporate Responsibility Policies which set out Helical’s high-level commitment across a number of impact areas. These are reviewed at Board level annually and are implemented by our senior management team.
  • Annual (rolling) performance targets to enable us to focus our efforts throughout the year on measurable, yet achievable performance goals. We report on energy and water consumption at our large multi-let assets and head office, and measure our performance against quantitative targets set the previous reporting year. In addition, we measure the proportion of waste at our managed assets as well as within our developments.
  • In collaboration with our consultants, we developed a sustainability project management and contractors checklist to ensure that sustainability issues are incorporated into all decisions throughout the development lifecycle.
  • Effective use of internal evaluation and review through quarterly meetings of key Helical personnel, external corporate responsibility advisors and principal managing agents to ensure effective delivery of the objectives and targets.

OBJECTIVES

  • We will endeavour to take appropriate action to ensure that we minimise our impact on the environment by adhering to the commitments outlined in our Environmental Policy.
  • We will minimise the use of resources through adopting the principles of reduce, re-use and recycle throughout our operations and by designing developments that achieve the highest sustainability standards.
  • We will endeavour to address the issues resulting from climate change such as the exposure to extreme weather risks including flooding and subsidence through appropriate design and asset appraisal. Adaptation to future climate change is a necessity and one which we believe can be achieved through sustainable design.
  • We will focus on refurbishing brownfield sites to make use of existing urbanised areas without compromising greenfield areas and improve the performance of existing unsustainable buildings.
  • We will seek to apply appropriate sustainable procurement standards for our development and asset management activities focussing on labour standards and environmental compliance.
  • We will work collaboratively with our project teams, managing agents, tenants and other stakeholders to understand their needs, delivering pragmatic and practical solutions to their sustainability challenges

PERFORMANCE

We manage our environmental and social impacts because there are business benefits in doing so. These benefits include increased ability to secure planning consent, improved marketability of assets to prospective tenants, reduced operating costs of assets, mitigating the risk of future legislation and regulation, and enhanced corporate reputation.

Helical uses Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to monitor performance in meeting its objectives and targets. The purpose of these indicators is to establish a baseline of performance against which quantifiable improvement targets can be set and objectively assessed. Helical has been setting these targets since 2004.

Environmental performance is monitored across Helical’s development and asset management activities. Below is a summary of Helical’s progress in relation to our Corporate Responsibility impact areas concerning the environment.  Further commentary can be found in our most recent annual report.