Earth Day 2023

Earth Day
21 April 2023

Supporting our clients with their ESG initiatives is a year-round priority for Portico, but highlighting the importance of becoming more sustainable has never been more vital than it is today, on Earth Day 2023.

Today, billions of people from over 190 countries across the world will join forces for a day of collective action to help ensure a more sustainable and fairer future for our planet. It is the first such day of action since the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change – a UN body comprising of the world’s leading climate scientists – released the final instalment of its latest report in March and delivered a ‘final warning’ to humanity – act now on climate change or it will be too late.

Hanna Barrett, Director of Operations at Portico, said: “We are privileged here at Portico to have the opportunity to support our clients on their sustainability journeys, and I am extremely proud that the hard work our incredible Portico people do each day plays such a collaborative and key role in helping to turn these critical ambitions into reality.”

With over 1,000 team members at more than 200 sites across the UK, our Portico people are the crucial bridge between a client’s sustainability goals and their effective implementation on the ground. Our teams build the fundamental relationships with a client’s service users that are necessary to encourage awareness of and engagement with a client’s sustainability practices and enable their sustainability goals to be achieved.

The service we provide to our client at 22 Bishopsgate in central London – a thriving collaborative community of businesses creating a diverse, inspiring and innovative working environment with sustainability at its heart – is a perfect example of this.

Our client utilises circular economy principles within its building to reduce waste and limit environmental impact. This includes procuring electricity from renewable energy, collaborating with environmentally considerate brands, using technology to save energy, and supporting local small businesses when sourcing suppliers. It works with its tenants and operators to do the same with all vendors in its food hall, for example, operating a zero-waste policy.

Portico manages its Active Commuter Park (ACP), the largest in Europe, that is designed to support and encourage a greener commute by making walking, running or cycling to work the most convenient, easy, and enticing mode of travel. To empower people to take responsibility for their commute, the ACP provides over 1,000 bicycle racks, 75 showers, and more than 1,300 secure lockers, as well as bike maintenance and wash stations and a sustainable dry-cleaning service. Our Portico people work as hosts and managers in the ACP, and together with our client at 22 Bishopsgate, actively encourage users to make greener choices and provide them with the tools, knowledge and support to do this.

As a result of the joint effort of Portico and 22 Bishopsgate, 6.5 per cent of the building now actively commute to work with over 16,000 cycling commutes in 2022 alone. Leading by example, our ACP Manager, Yanick, cycled a total of 1,800 kilometres to work in 2022 – the same distance as cycling from London to Paris five times! This is as well as working with his team to charge over 900 electric bikes, successfully service 168 bikes, and organise and manage the ACP’s running club which collectively ran over 600 kilometres in 2022. This is almost the distance from the UK to The Netherlands.

Playing a pivotal and collaborative role in turning 22 Bishopgate’s sustainability values into reality, our Portico people also support its learning and development functions, manage the building’s lobby, coordinate operations, and take responsibility for promotion of the marketing suite. In 2022, this included greeting 139,631 visitors, providing 237 building tours, hosting 481 events, and signing 12 dogs into the building.

Providing these front-of-house services means our Portico people are the first port of call when sharing 22 Bishopgate’s sustainability journey with service users. They are on the ground every day delivering key messaging, encouraging greener behaviours, demonstrating best practice, building knowledge, developing strong relationships with suppliers, and changing mindsets. This includes everything from printing less and recycling as many materials as possible to raising awareness of sustainable practices and ensuring lighting, heating and air-conditioning systems are turned off when meeting rooms are not in use.

Abbie Smith, Account Director at Portico, said: “The determination, drive and commitment of 22 Bishopsgate to being as sustainable as possible is inspiring. Our Portico people support this vision wholeheartedly and work diligently every day to build the foundations necessary to ensure it is realised.”

This Earth Day, our team members will be showing, as they do every day, how the small day-to-day actions of each of our Portico people can make a big difference overall.