Businesses encouraged to participate in free environmental benchmarking Survey

The Northern Ireland Environmental Benchmarking Survey has opened for entry and this year includes a Survey option for small businesses.

The Survey recognises and rewards those organisations that are going above and beyond their legal requirements to minimise their environmental impact and better manage their resources. Run by Business in the Community Northern Ireland (BITCNI), the Survey is sponsored by Moy Park and supported by the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) within the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA). Organisations of all sizes and from all sectors can take part in the Survey for free at www.bitcni.org.uk/NIEBS.

In 2018, 101 organisations took part in the Survey, 24 of those increasing their score on the previous year by demonstrating responsible business action for environmental improvement.

Keelin McCone, Programme Manager, BITCNI, said: “Since its inception in 1998, the Survey has played a key part in helping to drive environmental improvement in Northern Ireland. It provides a platform for organisations to benchmark their environmental performance with others, and identify areas where they need to take action.

“The Survey acts a catalyst for continuous improvement, encouraging firms to reduce their environmental impacts year-on-year. Consistency is key for development and typically we see companies increasing their scores to gold and platinum level through continued Survey participation. Every year we welcome new organisations to the Survey process and hope the introduction of the new Small Business Survey will encourage businesses with 25 staff or fewer to take part in 2019.”

Moy Park has taken part in the Survey since it began in 1998. Declan Cunningham, Head of Sustainability and Risk Management explains: “At Moy Park, we are committed to sustainable practices which minimise our environmental impact and make a positive contribution to the way people live. As such, we are delighted to sponsor the NI Environmental Benchmarking Survey once again this year. Corporate responsibility is a major focus for Moy Park and we are extremely pleased to have received ‘Platinum’ status – the highest scoring level – in the Survey for the last six years.”

David Small, Chief Executive, NIEA, said: “The Northern Ireland Environmental Benchmarking Survey is  well established as the province’s leading tool in providing businesses with proof of their green status. By helping organisations to analyse their environmental management and understand their impacts, the Survey plays a key role in encouraging local organisations to be more sustainable. It’s great that the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs can once again support the Survey and I look forward to seeing the results in November.”

Both versions of the Survey are free of charge and open to businesses and organisations from all sectors across Northern Ireland. The results, which are independently verified, will be revealed at an exclusive event at Belfast Harbour on Tuesday 26 November.

The deadline for Survey entries is Friday 21 June 2019. To take part in the Survey, visit www.bitcni.org.uk/NIEBS.

Business in the Community is hosting a free webinar for new Survey participants on Thursday 16 May, for more information, or to register for the workshop or Survey, email keelin.mccone@www.bitcni.org.uk or call (028) 9046 0606.