Going Green
09 June 2020 MedicAlert

In the 21st century, we are all more aware of climate change than we have ever been before. It is the story of our time and the need for the human race to take action and help heal the planet, before it is too late, has never been greater. It is a responsibility that we all must carry. At MedicAlert, we continually strive to reduce our emissions and wastage as much as possible, to help change the way our planet is headed.

Throughout the charity we’ve sought to implement positive environmental changes in the way we run, from reducing our carbon footprint from the energy our building requires, through to empowering our members to be more conscientious in the way they communicate with us.


Heating

In late 2019, we relocated to  new offices in Liscombe Park - a small business park built amidst an equestrian facility where all offices are nestled in renovated stables and cattle sheds. We specifically chose this location due to its decreased impact on the environment.

One of the many benefits of the new office location is its state of the art Air Source Heat Pump - a cost-efficient, low carbon footprint heat pump that extracts naturally occurring heat found in the outside air and compresses it to heat our offices. The heat pump is 4 times more efficient than the average boiler.


Recycling

Sometimes, the simplest things can help the most. With the amount of paperwork sent and received by our office, recycling is one of the most beneficial ways we can decrease our footprint. We use confidential shredding to first make sure that paperwork does not retain any personal details and then the paper is recycled for future use.

Not only do we sort our waste ourselves, into recycling and normal waste, but all bins on our site are then sorted through even more thoroughly to make sure that anything that can be recycled is!

Whilst no office is complete without mugs of tea and coffee, the milk that usually comes with those tasty beverages seems to almost always arrive in plastic containers these days - the kind of plastic that we see floating on the oceans and washing up along miles of otherwise beautiful coastline.

Plastic in our oceans threatens the lives and habitats of the marine life that call it home, which is why have all our milk delivered to the office in glass bottles. This way, they can be washed and reused so hopefully fewer lives and habitats will be impacted by the products we use.



If you have ordered any jewellery recently, you may have noticed that we have changed our packaging. The new packaging consists of small cardboard boxes that are made from 100% recycled paper and can easily be recycled again. Inside, you will find a small pouch made from cotton and linen – which is 100% biodegradable - and some thin acid-free tissue paper to keep your silver or gold jewellery from being damaged.

Many of our members have made use of our Disc Exchange service over the years - a service that not only saves you money when changing the engraving on your Gold or Silver jewellery, but also allows us to recycle the old silver and gold safely, removing any confidential details. We also offer a recycling service free of charge for any old MedicAlert jewellery that you want to dispose of.


Process Optimisation

One of the newest and largest additions to our website is the ability to log in and make changes to your account yourself. This has significantly reduced the amount of paperwork we send out and the amount we receive.

In days gone past, we would send out hundreds of brochures to members before they would order a new piece of medical ID jewellery, but now our full range is available to view on our website at any time. It’s as easy as clicking a button to order the item you love!


The Story Isn’t Over...

At MedicAlert, we take our social responsibilities very seriously. We understand the implications of our actions and so work hard to mitigate the negative impact the charity may have on the environment through our continued efforts at reducing our carbon footprint.

We know that despite using an environmentally-friendly heating system, limiting our use of non-recyclable material, upgrading our packaging to reduce waste and optimising our communications process to significantly decrease the amount of paper required, there is still a lot that can be done to become even greener. We will continue to implement positive change as we identify them and we will never stop exploring new tools which may support this endeavour.

But we also know that we are just a drop in the ocean. Our efforts are important, just as the efforts made by everyone else are. However, it is when we collectively take action to heal the planet; to become greener in all areas of business and life, that we will truly see better results.

So, the responsibility falls on everyone. Everyone can take individual actions to help with the climate crisis. You can take your lunch to work in Tupperware, rather than a plastic bag. Switching off the lights as you leave a room will help save energy. Walking to work, rather than driving, will directly reduce your own carbon footprint. There are so many choices we can easily make to lessen the damage being done to the planet. To beat climate change, we all need to help. It’s a team effort, and together we’re strongest.



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