The theme of Earth Day 2023 is ‘Invest In Our Planet’, and looks to highlight the importance of dedicating time and resources to environmental issues and to encourage people, governments, institutions and businesses to recognize our collective responsibility.
Sustainability is a key part of Polka’s values. We strive to be a vibrant hub for our community and for future generations to come and understand that our actions towards sustainability play an important role in this.
To celebrate Earth Day, we’re taking a look back at some recent actions we’ve taken to improve our sustainability. These include:
- Created an internal Green Team to champion and embed sustainability within our organisation
- Installed solar panels which have produced over 29,000kWh since their installation (as of 19/04/2023) – this translates to about 6,170kg of CO2 emission!
- Biodegradable seasonal cups in the café over the festive season
- Biodegradable bags and bioplastic and recyclable toys in our shop
- Participant in Love Wimbledon’s business community and sustainability goals
- Our brochures are Planet Positive, certified carbon neutral, printed by an eco-accredited factory to ISO14001 on a certified carbon neutral press and are also available in a digital form
- We source re-distributed office furniture that would otherwise have gone to landfill
- Installed a Building Management System, which allows us to zone and manage heating more efficiently
- Our building switched to LED lighting to improve efficiency of lighting
- Enhanced the buildings ecology and wildlife friendly provision by adding more scattered trees, scrubbed planting, bird and bat boxes, log piles and insect houses, as per Polka’s Habitat Management Plan
- Offered a green-themed Saturday Club in April where families made bug hotels and plant pots out of recycled newspapers
- Costumes are reused wherever possible or otherwise donated
- Repurposed existing materials from the building as part of our recent redevelopment
We were proud to have been crowned Winners of the Sustainable Impact category at Merton Best Business Awards 2022. Our newly refurbished building also achieved a BREEAM (Building Research Establishment’s Environmental Assessment Method) ‘excellent’ rating, putting it in the UK’s top 10% for environmental good practice. As well as this, we know there’s more that we can do and are always striving to continue improving and building upon our sustainable practices.
We hope our building and actions will inspire visitors young and old to consider ways that they can introduce environmental sustainability into their own lives.
Here’s to a greener future!