Case studies


Thai Union relies on the oceans for its business and is recognised widely as a leader for its approach to sustainability

SDGs In Action: How Thai Union is achieving Goal 14 - Life Below Water

Through the lens of SDG 6, Diageo learnt that it could improve CSR efforts around gender, poverty and health and wellbeing in the communities that it interacts with

The SDGs In Action: How Diageo is achieving SDG 6 - Clean Water and Sanitation

Welcome back to edie's new editorial series which breaks down exactly how businesses are turning the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into action. Up next: global drinks firm Diageo outlines how it is improving its water efficiency to the benefit of the communities it operates within.

In action: The environmental legacy of the Thames Tideway Tunnel

The Thames Tideway Tunnel is a new major piece of infrastructure for London, capturing an average of 39 million tonnes of untreated sewage which currently enters the tidal River Thames every year. If no action is taken, this is anticipated to reach 70 million tonnes by 2020.

In action: edie publisher's AI-assisted IT software to reduce energy

In an effort to 'walk the walk' with sustainability' and reduce carbon emissions, edie’s parent company Faversham House has trialled innovative computer software to measure, manage and ultimately reduce associated energy.

Through the lens of SDG 15, Asia Pulp & Paper is committed to  improving the livelihoods of the farmers and communities that it interacts with

SDGs In Action: How Asia Pulp & Paper is achieving Goal 15 - Life On Land

Welcome to edie's brand new editorial series which breaks down exactly how businesses are turning the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into action. First up: paper manufacturer Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) reveals how it is driving out deforestation while improving the livelihoods of its workers in Indonesia.

In action: Tower Hamlets Council's low-carbon district heating system

A 25-year Joint Venture between Tower Hamlets Council and EDF Energy led to the creation of a low-carbon district heating system that has generated carbon savings, reduced energy costs and conserved a Heritage building at the heart of the refurbishment.

In action: EDF Energy's smart data focus to drive energy efficiency

In September 2017, EDF Energy installed its PowerNow live energy monitoring system at one of its own offices as a way of trialling its own solutions whilst improving the energy efficiency of the building. As revealed in this case study, the project has achieved excellent results all round.

In action: EDF's renewable energy-based renovation of a listed building

Between 2012 and 2015, EDF Energy embarked on an ambitious project to bring a listed 12th Century building into the 21st Century by installing onsite renewable systems to generate low-carbon heat, cooling and electricity.

In action: The Langham London hotel's aerobic digestion of food waste

In March 2018, the 5-star Langham London hotel embarked on a site-wide behavioural and infrastructural overhaul to divert food waste from landfill through an innovative recycling system introduced by Orca Enviro Systems.

The Martorell factory, located north of Barcelona, turned 25 earlier this year

In Practice: SEAT's largest solar array in the automotive industry

In a move to capture the benefits of Industry 4.0 and reach sustainability targets for 2025, Spanish carmaker SEAT is showcasing its Martorell factory as hub for innovative environmental solutions - including the largest solar plant in the automotive industry.

AB InBev’s largest UK brewery in Magor has acted as a test-bed for innovative solutions and technologies

In practice: AB InBev's onsite energy drive at its largest UK brewery

AB InBev's recently-announced carbon reduction targets will see the global brewer lean on past best-practice examples to decarbonise facilities. One of the shining examples thus far has been the use of onsite technologies at the Magor brewery in Wales.

Annually, more than 60,000 tonnes of used glass bottles and jars – which could otherwise end up in landfill or littered, will be reused and transformed

In Practice: The 'world-first' closed-loop glass recycling facility

Knauf Insulation's aim to ensure that recycled contents are embedded into the products it manufactures has seen the company strike a long-term partnership with waste specialists Veolia to create a closed-loop system for glass waste.

The aim of the trial is to provide practical evidence that a hydrogen-blended gas can be integrated without disrupting gas services to customers

In Practice: The UK's Northern hydrogen heating grid trial

In a UK first, a pioneering new green gas trial is being demonstrated at Keele University that aims to inject zero-carbon hydrogen into the natural gas network.

Around 2,000 Energiesprong homes have been completed in the Netherlands, of which around 60% were renovations of existing properties and 40% new builds

In Practice: The UK's first Energiesprong homes

A pioneering new pilot project in Nottingham aims to make select households ultra-low carbon and fit for the future by renovating them using the 'Energiesprong' techniques used in the Netherlands.

The blackwater system will reduce the building’s water footprint by 76%

In practice: Salesforce's largest US blackwater recycling system

As part of a move to redefine its business purpose through staff well-being and sustainability, Salesforce has used its flagship San Francisco headquarters to champion water efficiency in an area notorious for severe droughts.

The three-year development represents a £90m investment from AccorHotels, and the building was delivered on time and to budget

In practice: AccorHotels' new project targeting BREEAM excellent certification

Ahead of edie's flagship Sustainability Leaders Awards in January, edie is taking a closer look at some of the projects initiatives that have been deemed worthy of a finalist position by our expert judges. Up next: AccorHotels' new London hotel.

British papermaker James Cropper has invented what it claims is “the world’s first upcycling process” for used disposable paper cups

In practice: James Cropper's upcycling solution for the coffee cup conundrum

Ahead of edie's flagship Sustainability Leaders Awards in January, edie is taking a closer look at some of the projects initiatives that have been deemed worthy of a finalist position by our expert judges. First up: James Cropper's upcycling system for paper cups.

The 12,000 LED retrofit has seen Guadalajara generate immediate electricity savings of approximately 68% compared to the previous lighting system

In practice: Guadalajara's 12,000 LED street light retrofit from Philips

Philips Lighting has this week completed a LED retrofit across the Spanish City of Guadalajara that will help the city council realise huge energy efficiency and carbon savings.

The new energy and heating infrastructure will reduce carbon emissions at the Trust by around 10,000 tonnes annually

In practice: Oxford University Hospitals' money-saving CHP retrofit

Oxford University Hospitals benefited from a finance procurement system that partnered the Trust with companies that could replace aging heat and power infrastructure with a combined heat and power system that would generate massive economic savings.

Unite Students is currently working with the Science-Based Targets Initiative to finalise its carbon reduction goals

In practice: Unite Students' 'Gateway' to an energy-efficiency retrofit

By joining the RBS Innovation Gateway, Unite Students gained access to a wider scope of innovative energy-efficiency solutions - some of which have been retrofitted at the Sidney Webb House in London.

100 Victoria Street achieved BREEAM Outstanding and WELL Silver certification

In practice: Landsec's BREEAM Outstanding headquarters designed to WELL standards

As more companies look to create the right work environments for staff wellbeing, Landsec created the UK's largest fully WELL Certified space for staff health, which also achieved a BREEAM Outstanding rating.

More than 3,600 solar panels were installed as part of the project, and will generate approximately 940,000kWh of electricity annually

In practice: UK's largest landlord-funded distribution warehouse rooftop solar installation

The landlord/tenant relationship can be a barrier when it comes to sustainability and onsite generation, but both Dixons Carphone and LondonMetric will benefit from the new solar installation at a distribution warehouse in Newark.

Bloomberg’s new office is expected to deliver a 73% saving in water consumption and 35% saving in energy usage and associated CO2 emissions

In practice: Bloomberg designs world's highest BREEAM-rated office building

Bloomberg's new European headquarters in London has achieved the highest BREEAM design-stage score by a major office development, making it one of the world's most sustainable office building.

Eaton and Nissan will install the xStorage Building System in the football stadium’s car park in early 2018

In practice: Amsterdam ArenA's EV battery storage system

Amsterdam ArenA wants to be the most innovative stadium in the world by 2020 and has already utilised numerous sustainability technologies, including the latest installment of old electric vehicles batteries as a storage system, to help with this ambition.

To date, 868 tonnes of coffee has been collected through the initiative to be transformed into biomass pellets

In practice: Network Rail's closed-loop partnership to recycle waste coffee grounds

Striking a partnership with coffee waste collectors Bio-Bean enabled Network Rail to make steps in reducing waste at its station, and also got retailers and staff to boost coffee collection to be used for renewable power.

The engagement drive means that, as of 2016, 98% of Edinburgh's waste is diverted from landfill - a “huge increase” on 2015 levels

In practice: Edinburgh Zoo's behaviour change drive to increase recycling

Attracting more than half a million visitors each year, Edinburgh Zoo has a significant opportunity to engage consumers on sustainability at a large scale. Here, edie charts an award-winning behaviour change drive which has helped the attraction divert 98% of its waste away from landfill.

Bywaters has reduced its carbon emissions by around 45% and saved more than 640 tonnes of CO2 since February 2016

In practice: London's largest solar retrofit project

Waste management firm Bywaters has dramatically reduced its energy usage and achieved near self-sufficiency following the delivery of a 1MW solar retrofit project at its plant in East London.

Smurfit Kappa's €134m (£120m) investment in new technologies at its Nettingsdorf Paper Mill will significantly reduce emissions while increasing production output

In practice: Smurfit Kappa's £120m onsite sustainability drive

With one eye on a key carbon reduction goal for 2020, paper-based packaging company Smurfit Kappa recently undertook a multi-million-euro investment into new boiler and steam turbine systems at one of its major manufacturing facilities in Austria which will significantly reduce emissions.

The low-carbon systems utilised throughout the facility have resulted in a 45% reduction in energy use compared to an industry-standard data centre

In practice: Capgemini's carbon-cutting Merlin data centre

With data centres accounting for 40% of Capgemini's total emissions and 70% of energy use, IT consulting firm's decision to develop an ultra-sustainable, energy-efficient data centre has driven great results, helping to push the company beyond a carbon goal one year ahead of schedule.

The £50m Bermondsey Dive Under project required a collaborative approach between client, designers and contractors

In practice: Network Rail's Bermondsey Dive Under biodiversity project

Network Rail's infrastructure project received CEEQUAL Excellent Whole Team Award of 96.6%, having increased biodiversity in the area by 113%. The score is currently the highest that has been achieved by a completed project on the £7bn Thameslink expansion programme.

The apartments at 119 Ebury Street apartments offer a number of benefits to residents including lower energy bills, improved indoor air quality and better sound-proofing

In practice: Grosvenor's highly sustainable redevelopment of a heritage building

Grosvenor Britain & Ireland's building project at 119 Ebury Street, Belgravia, is the UK's first listed building to achieve BREEAM 'Outstanding', utilising a range of low-carbon technologies that significantly reduce the site's environmental footprint.

Coffee cups, lids and coffee grounds generated by over 300 shops, bars and restaurants across the 12-acre Canary Wharf Estate are now recycled through the use of designated bins

In practice: Canary Wharf Group's closed-loop Clean Coffee Zone

With the Canary Wharf Estate welcoming almost a million visitors every week, site owner Canary Wharf Group has seized upon an opportunity to ignite a resource revolution. Through the creation of closed-loop 'Clean Coffee Zone', coffee-related waste is now recycled and turned into new resources.

PwC's central London office, which was recently refurbished to BREEAM 'outstanding' standards. Photo: PwC

In practice: PwC's new programme to drive responsible technology

With technological advances having an unprecedented impact on business operations, accountancy firm PwC has published a new responsible technology policy, setting out commitments and actions to ensure society can reap the benefits of the 'Fourth Industrial Revolution'.