The energy used by Waterstones is carefully monitored and we have in place practices to help reduce our energy consumption. This has led to a reduction over the last year which follows a year on year reduction over the last four years. The Environment Champions in each store are directly responsible for energy management at a branch level, and can make a significant contribution to the protection of natural resources and the environment.
The following initiatives have all contributed to our reduced energy consumption:
Energy management system. A substantial initiative is underway to reduce energy usage in our UK stores through the implementation of a new energy management system. This enables systems for heating, air conditioning and lighting to be pre-programmed and to ensure maximum efficiencies. Following a trial in a number of Waterstones stores in 2008/09, in which energy savings of over 14% were achieved, roll out of the system commenced during 2009.
Open Door policy. Store managers can keep their front doors closed outside peak trading hours during particularly cold weather. We have also introduced measures to reduce our use of air-conditioning and heating.
"Switch it off" policy in stores and offices. Environmental Champions make sure everyone at their store is aware of the waste of energy caused by lights and monitors and other equipment left running unnecessarily, and encourage the turning off of lights where possible. The Champions also encourage colleagues to turn off store appliances when not in use to help branches meet their energy targets.
Clean energy policy. Our Drogheda store currently receives energy that is sourced from wind farms and similar environmentally sources, through a specialist "clean energy" supplier. We will introduce this to other stores when appropriate.
Long life lamps. All Waterstones stores use energy efficient long life lamps.
Smart meters have been installed in all branches allowing us to monitor energy usage in real time and identify over-users.
In 2008 Waterstones joined a government group called "The Ripple effect" which is designed to help companies reduce the amount of water they use. Our Environment Champions support this by checking meter readings, carrying out audits, looking for running taps and leaks, fitting cisterns with economisers, and generally promoting awareness.