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Helping Edinburgh Leisure go green

An Edinburgh Leisure employee helping a woman on a treadmill

Edinburgh Leisure is the capital’s biggest leisure provider. With more than 1,000 staff and 4.8 million customer visits to more than 30 venues every year, the independent leisure trust has been working to reduce its environmental impact since 2012.

In 2012, Edinburgh Leisure developed a Green Plan which aimed to reduce the organisation’s impact on the environment by engaging with staff. Each site is given carbon-saving actions, which are coordinated by Green Champions. Points are awarded for each action taken, depending on its difficulty and impact. Focusing on things staff can do, rather than issues out of their control, empowers employees and helps make the Green Plan a success.

Monthly league tables are displayed on each site’s Green Board to encourage Green Champions, other staff and customers to take part. Edinburgh Leisure set a target of reducing carbon emissions by 5% a year since the Plan’s launch and has consistently hit the target each year. Since 2015, Home Energy Scotland has trained over 250 staff and delivered more than 1,200 pieces of energy saving advice. This support has helped Edinburgh Leisure achieve its green plan objectives, and helped staff members make their homes more energy efficient.

Many Edinburgh Leisure employees have been referred for further support, funding, and home visits from Home Energy Scotland’s technical teams. This has helped them make home energy efficiency improvements such as a new boiler, insulation, and renewable technologies. Home Energy Scotland also now supports two of the organisation’s community projects; Steady Steps and Ageing Well.

The partnership has been successful because of the tailored package of support we developed to meet Edinburgh Leisure’s needs. Our teams made sure events were relevant and actions were achievable for staff, customising sessions to tie in with the wide variety of staff roles and time available at each Edinburgh Leisure site

Edinburgh Leisure’s staff engagement efforts paid off when they won the inaugural ‘Green Team’ award at the VIBES, Scottish Environment in Business Awards, in 2016. Fiona Douglas, Energy and Sustainability Manager, said:

“Our staff are really enthusiastic and have been grateful for the support they’ve received from Home Energy Scotland to make home energy efficiencies. It’s such a positive relationship and they’ve also worked really well with our Active Communities team, which helps our more vulnerable customers to stay warm at home, further improving their health and wellbeing. I’m more than confident of their ability to interact with our staff and customers alike.”

Find out more about our free and interactive employee engagement services, including workshops and e-learning to help your colleagues save energy and reduce their bills.