World Environment Day, or WED for short, was founded by the United Nations in 1974 and is annually celebrated on 5th June. It is now widely celebrated in over 100 countries and has grown to become an important global platform for public outreach.
Land Securities has celebrated the day with events across its Retail and London portfolios since 2012. It is a great opportunity to engage with our customers, communities, employees and partners; raising awareness of global environmental issues. WED also offers the opportunity to recognise achievements and best practice in environmental sustainability which of course, occur all year round.
This year it fell on a Sunday so we were quite flexible making sure that certain centres and buildings could celebrate the day a few days earlier or later if need be. We encouraged everyone across our portfolio to get involved and we had a wide range of exciting activities going on across the UK to appeal to all ages.
At Bluewater a lot of the activities were created to raise awareness of what the centre does to promote biodiversity within the grounds, parklands and lakes. We had owl and hawk displays, a wildlife treasure hunt, leaf rubbing and the day was rounded off with a bat watching event suitably named ‘going batty at Bluewater’.
The team at Lewisham Shopping Centre volunteered with Cornmill Gardens to help clean up a local stretch of the River Ravensbourne. They also held a flower and vegetable seed giveaway in conjunction with a local garden centre.
At St David’s, Cardiff there was a real ‘buzz’ about bee’s. Activities led by Pollen8, RSPB and Cardiff University included a plasticine bee making competition and bug house making. And for the adults BMW promoted the electric vehicle charging in the shopping centre car park, although I have been told there were quite a few adults getting involved in the bee making competition!
In London our waste service partner Bywaters offered our tenants tours of their materials recovery facility in Bow, East London, which gave a great insight into the volumes of waste produced and how it is sorted.
These are just a few of the activities that went on across our portfolio and I was really impressed with the level of dedication and the creativity of each team to help celebrate and bring to life the purpose of the day.
It goes without saying that we don’t just recognise environmental sustainability on one day a year, we endeavour to embed it into everything that we do. Our customers, communities, employees and partners are vital in doing this. We’ve been doing some great things this year and have some exciting plans for the time ahead. You can read more about this in our annual Sustainability Report due for release on 15 June 2016.
This blog was originally published here.
Environment Manager, Land Securities