VIBES Award: Green Team


  • Strongly motivated Green Team comprising members from each department within the organisation.
  • The team’s remit is to target staff behaviour change to reduce the organisation’s carbon footprint.
  • Green Team Objectives and Targets are updated and publicised each year.
  • The staff involved range from new team members, to those that have been active for a number of years, across a range of job roles.
  • Clear direction, support and encouragement is provided by Changeworks senior management team.
Sponsored by: Anglian Water Business
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Changeworks is one of Scotland’s largest environmental charities – a thriving social enterprise with 30 years’ experience in sustainability. They work with organisations, communities and individuals to deliver practical solutions that reduce carbon emissions, fuel poverty and waste. Changeworks has a strong, motivated Green Team, engaged in a wide range of initiatives to minimise the carbon footprint of the business. The team is made up of staff members throughout the organisation and has strong senior management support.

The Green Team Award rewards teams that have recognised the importance of working as a team to deliver  environmental improvements. Green teams are cross-functional groups of employees who come together to educate, inspire and empower employees around sustainability. They identify and implement specific solutions to help their organisation operate in a more environmentally sustainable fashion.

Changeworks is to be commended for the wide range of initiatives that the Green Team have put in place. It was apparent that the team is looking to continue to improve their environmental performance with ongoing initiatives to ensure that the carbon footprint of the organisation is kept to a minimum.

The Environmental Policy, Green Team Objectives and Targets and Changeworks Strategic Plan all clearly show how the ethos of the Green Team is embedded within the organisation.

Monitoring and evaluation is very comprehensive, with water, electricity and gas readings recorded weekly. Recycling rates are also closely monitored. This data is very comprehensively presented in the annual Carbon Footprint Report and Green Team Annual Report.

The team has introduced a number of staff engagement initiatives to minimise carbon footprint which include:

  • Participating in the ‘Love to Ride’ competition which achieved 69% of staff cycling
  • Installing a new bicycle shelter which increased office cycle parking capacity by 50%
  • Rolling out a ‘Walk to Work’ challenge: 74% of participants walked more during the challenge, 42% walked more after the challenge
  • Introducing electric vehicles to Changeworks’ car fleet
  • Running the ‘Raise your Mile Per Gallon’ campaign to encourage staff to drive nonelectric pool cars more efficiently and establishing an MPG benchmark
  • Achieving a consistently high rate of recycling – 86% of office waste
  • Regular communications include weekly tips, initiatives and updates

The Green Team’s input ensured sustainability was considered and embedded in the design phase of a recent significant office.

The team is looking into creating a vertical pallet garden for biodiversity purposes and also investigating rainwater harvesting at the site.

Teresa Bray, Chief Executive, Changeworks: “We are delighted to have been commended for the VIBES Green Team award. As a leading environmental charity, Changeworks is committed to reducing our carbon footprint and sustainability is at the heart of what we do. This award recognises the hard work, creativity and dedication of our Green Team in engaging our staff to put sustainability into practice.”