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Designing a More Sustainable Future

9 December

Designing a More Sustainable Future

A small Auckland-based strategy and design agency with a strong environmental commitment has gone a step further, becoming the first business in its sector to achieve carboNZero ‘small enterprise’ certification.

Black Robin Design has been implementing sustainability initiatives since the company was established in 2005, but they wanted to get their actions formally recognised. carboNZero certification enabled Black Robin to achieve this objective, and in a highly credible manner.

Mary MacGregor-Reid, the Design Director at Black Robin Design says environmental and social responsibility are core values for the company, and carboNZero certification was testament to their commitment to measure, manage and mitigate their greenhouse gas emissions.

“I was keen to have some recognised measure of our carbon emissions so that we can get an honest idea of our footprint that we can monitor and reduce over time”, she says.

carboNZero certification was developed from over a decade of research at New Zealand Crown Research Institute, Landcare Research. Certification demonstrates that the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with Black Robin Design have been measured and independently verified in accordance with international standards. It recognises their commitment to continuously manage and reduce their emissions and allows Black Robin Design to offset the emissions that they cannot reduce through a landfill gas project in Palmerston North.

Professor Ann Smith, the carboNZero programme’s Technical and Certification Manager, congratulated Black Robin Design on their significant achievement and says a rigorous approach such as that undertaken by the company, is fundamental to the programme’s success.

“If the business is carboNZero certified, customers, investors and business partners can be sure it has been assessed to the most rigorous standards out there”, she said.

“Businesses are increasingly using carboNZero certification as an important tool in building their national and international reputation. So the process has to be as robust and transparent as possible”.
Black Robin Design are reducing the amount of electricity used for lighting by removing one fluorescent tube per unit to halve electricity usage for lighting and they utilise a Bokashi system for food waste, which reduces their amount of waste that goes to landfill.

Furthermore, they have purchased a Toyota Yaris as their company car, which is small, fuel-efficient and boasts low greenhouse gas emissions.

Undertaking the highly credible carboNZero programme means Black Robin Design cannot be accused of misleading clients and stakeholders about their green credentials.


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