Enhancing performance through green teams
EPA supported National Green Teams Programme launches for organisations looking to motivate their staff and improve performance
Green team members and environmental and sustainability champions have a new opportunity to help make a positive impact on their organisation’s environmental, social and financial bottom lines, through the new certified National Green Teams Programme www.greenteams.ie from the EPA’s Green Enterprise initiative. The National Green Teams Programme – the first of its kind in Ireland – is a training and support programme which helps green team members or those appointed as champions, to gain key knowledge on sustainability and resource efficiency and play a central role in running their green teams. This taught and online programme ultimately aims to help participants get fellow staff on board to continually improve their organisation’s performance on the environment, the community and its own long term viability.
Developed by Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) and environmental consultants Consulteco, the programme was launched with Rosderra Meats and WIT’s internal green team candidates. It offers a robust all-round approach which weaves together sustainability and resource efficiency along with practical advice on running green teams and how to get fellow staff engaged through behaviour change. On successful completion of the programme, participants are awarded a Certificate of recognition from WIT.
Tom O’Brien, Lecturer in the Environmental Performance of Buildings at WIT, who was involved in the design of the programme, commented “One of the aims of the programme is to put green teams on a more formal and professional footing within their organisations, providing them with training and recognition to enhance their position and avoid the pitfall that after the initial enthusiasm, green team momentum and commitment fades away.”
Designed for staff members of green teams or sustainability/environmental champions within organisations, the programme helps participants:
- Gain basic technical knowledge on resource efficiency.
- Develop skills to promote sustainable action in the workplace.
- Improve the running of green teams.
- Access support and resources, including peer support.
The support through the programme consists of:
- Workshops covering sustainability, resource efficiency, running employee green team networks and getting staff buy-in.
- A Handbook for environmental champions.
- Web pages with resources for green teams.
- Supervision of a sustainability project carried out by participants.
- An online peer-to-peer networking forum for sharing and exchanging information, knowledge and experience among Green Team members.
On completion of the workshops, Shane McHugh of Rosderra Meats maintenance team was very satisfied with the outcome “I found the three workshop series very beneficial, I have gained a lot of knowledge and ideas.” Terry O’Brien from WIT’s Library Services also endorsed the programme “It opened my eyes to a lot of possibilities and I found it worthwhile personally and professionally.”
For more information about the programme, visit www.greenteams.ie and see how you can maximise the environmental savings for your organisation through staff engagement.
EPA Green Enterprise
Green Enterprise challenges organisations & companies to produce goods and provide services in more environmentally friendly ways and to minimise emissions through cleaner production methods. The objective is to achieve a balance between economic and social activity and environmental protection.
Since 2001, EPA has operated a grant scheme to encourage Irish companies and organisations to implement cleaner, greener work practices. Over eight phases, the EPA has supported 116 demonstration projects, using a co-funding model.
Originally known as the Cleaner Greener Production Programme, in 2013, the programme was rebranded as Green Enterprise to emphasise that the programme supports projects in the services sector and in social enterprises, as well as production and processing companies.
The philosophy of the programme remains that prevention is better than cure and this change underlines the linkages with the other activities in the EPA National Waste Prevention Programme.
Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT)
WIT has more than 8,000 students across five campuses in Waterford city, with education delivered from higher certificate to doctoral level.
Prospective CAO applicants have 70 CAO courses to choose from across a range of disciplines including business, engineering and architecture, sports and nursing, law, social sciences, arts and psychology, the creative & performing arts, languages, tourism and hospitality, science and computing.
The Institute has continued to make a huge contribution to the educational, societal, and economic health of the region.
WIT has been hugely successful over the last 46 years, with close to 2,500 students graduating each year, and acts as a catalyst for positive change in the south east and further afield.
Over the last 10 years, the Institute has been granted in excess of €150 million in external research funding, leading the field of research in the institute of technology sector, and similar to some smaller universities.
Consulteco is an energy and environmental consultancy which offers a distinct blend of Technical, Behavioural and Management solutions to help deliver bottom-line savings for organisations and contribute to corporate social responsibility.
Consulteco has over 20 years’ experience in promoting energy and environmental programmes in industry, commerce and the public sector.
Success in sustainability programmes requires aligning the People, Process and Technology aspects. Consulteco’s approach ensures integration of all three, which can make the difference in the success or failure of a programme.
Consulteco offers a range of dedicated services to help ensure that an organisation’s employees become their best resource-saving partner.