We take the climate crisis and our environmental responsibility very seriously here at Flux. We are always trying to find new ways to minimise our impact on the earth. Here are a few of the ways that we do this in the design studio:
1. Coffee and compost
Like many of you, we always start the working day with coffee! We usually make our coffee in the studio, and dispose of the coffee grounds in our office organics bin. We also use this for any other food scraps, such as banana peels and apple cores. If we do venture out to a local cafe or coffee cart, we are sure to take our keep cups with us!
2. Recycle everything possible
This should really be a given these days, but we make sure we recycle everything that we can in the studio. We’re lucky to be in South Australia, where our recycling is still being processed properly and sometimes turned back into products.
3. Only use air conditioning or heating when necessary
When I was at university, the air conditioning was so cold that I would have to remember to bring a jacket with me in summer. It seemed ridiculous! We know not everyone has control over the temperature of their office (especially if you’re in a large building), but if you can choose the temperature on the thermostat, keep it around between 20°-24°C in winter, and between 23°-26°C in summer.
4. Keep the commute green
Thinking about how we travel to and from work is another way we keep our footprint small. Where possible, we walk to work, carpool or catch public transport. Not only is this good for the environment, but the addition of a short (or long) walk to the daily routine is very good for one’s health. And in this new era of working from home, sometimes we don’t even commute at all!
5. Specify recycled and FSC certified paper stock
Choosing paper stock with recycled content and/or FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certification is another way we can help to reduce our impact on the environment. Often our clients trust us to select an appropriate paper stock for their printing needs. When suitable, we specify a paper stock which, one way or another, reduces the amount of damage being done to the environment. Sometimes it is ensuring the stock is produced in a low carbon process. Other times it is about reducing the number of trees impacted by the selection. All of the above when possible!
6. Seek out projects with a social and/or community benefit
Perhaps the most significant way we keep our environmental impact down is through the work that we do. Our favourite projects to work on are those that benefit the community in some way. This may be through encouraging environmentally-friendly habits, raising awareness about an important issue, promoting a service that increases health and well-being, or assisting with the communication of scientific findings. It gives us a great sense of purpose and fulfilment to use our design skills for good!
7. Environmental management system
Sometimes we are required to reduce our impact on the environment—how good! Many of our larger corporate and Government clients require us to keep updated management policies in place—one of the policies that is often requested is an Environmental Management Policy. We adopted this all the way back in 2010!
An environmental management system is a self-authored document which formalises our commitment to reducing the impact our business has on the environment. We are more than happy to do this because we feel very strongly about this topic already. And we know that maintaining this process also means our competitors are required to formulate similar policies.
Our environmental policy states that our studio is committed to a cleaner environment for the health of our communities and the sustainability of our world. Through planning and self-examination, we seek to continually improve our practices so we may continue to produce quality design outcomes while preventing pollution, reducing our impact on the environment and maintaining good relationships with clients, employees and other stakeholders.