We use a range of initiatives to make efficiency savings and to deliver our environment policy commitments.

Green Guardians

Through our network of environmental staff champions, our Green Guardians, we are encouraging good environmental practice in every department. We have 300 Green Guardians who encourage their team to be:

  • Energy Smart - switch off lights and electrical equipment to reduce wasted energy
  • Travel Smart - use public transport, car share or tele/videoconference to minimise car travel
  • Print Smart - print less to reduce wasted ink and paper.

Green Guardians also encourage economic use of office resources such as re-use of envelopes, folders and ring binders, minimising waste and re-using and avoiding the cost of buying new items.

Energy Efficiency Investment Fund

Since 2006 we have been working with the Carbon Trust and Salix Finance who part finance our £1 million Energy Efficiency Investment Fund. This provides money for energy efficiency projects as interest free loans. The projects they fund must deliver savings in energy use and the loans are repaid to the fund within 5 years, enabling the money to be used again for new projects.

Projects include:

We have also invested more than £100,000 in water efficiency improvements and part financed renewable energy and biomass heating projects in several Kent schools and continue to explore further projects.

To date we have invested £3.9 million, with lifetime savings estimated at £13.1 million. This is reducing our energy bills and saving 62,995 tonnes of carbon dioxide, helping us exceed our five-year carbon reduction target.

Renewable energy projects

Since 2008 we have invested in more than 30 renewable energy projects. In doing so we have attracted funding grants of almost £500,000 as well as expecting income of more than £900,000 from the new feed in tariffs for electricity during the next 25 years. In 2012, we invested in three solar PV projects on two KCC offices and a residential care home with total savings and income of over £20,000 per year, these have been generating 25% more electricity than expected.