2022 was the year of COP27, extreme weather, and global climate reparations, and one in which we’ve been furthering our own efforts to become a more sustainable company. At the end of her first year as our sustainability officer at Cuttsy+Cuttsy, we catch up with Louise Jones on how much we have achieved, our latest environmental assessment and to look ahead to 2023.
So, Lou, how was 2022?
2022 was a big year for us in the sustainability arena. I was appointed into the new role of sustainability officer, and we set about putting our Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) strategy into place. We got off to a great start with a silver rating from EcoVadis. One of our principal goals for the year was to complete a voluntary disclosure with the Carbon Disclosure Protocol (CDP), which we submitted in July 2022. CDP is a not-for-profit charity that runs a global disclosure system to provide companies (as well as investors, cities, states, and regions) with a rating for their environmental performance.
It’s important to know exactly where you’re starting from, before you can get a clear sight of where you need to go. And that’s where CDP comes in. CDP submission takes the form of a detailed questionnaire, designed to assess a company’s environmental management and progress towards stewardship. A company’s disclosure via CDP marks a starting point for improving good environmental management. This means striving to operate in line with a 1.5-degree, deforestation-free and water-secure future.
And was this all straight forward?
Despite our determination to base our ESG targets on real data through disclosures such as CDP and Science Based Targets Initiative, the submission was still pretty daunting. Not only did we need comprehensive information on our own environmental management and protection, but that of our entire supply chain, including Scope 3. However, we were determined to disclose by July to gain our first score by the end of 2022. Together with some support and advice from our sustainability consultant (David Masters, Ecofiniti) we gathered, analysed and submitted all the information possible.
That must have been a relief — what rating did you hope to achieve?
We had been advised to temper our hopes for our first CDP rating due to the complexity of the submission and difficulty of gaining a high rating straight off the bat. But just before we left for our Christmas break, we received a big, bright, bouncing B-rating, which we are still amazed and delighted about!
That sounds impressive, but what does it mean?
A B-rating is awarded to companies that have addressed the environmental impacts of their business and ensure good environmental management. This is a great point to build from. To achieve the very best CDP rating of A, we now need to look towards ‘undertaking actions that mark us out as a leader in [our] field’. As we focus on reaching Cuttsy+Cuttsy’s2024 goal of Net Zero, aiming towards an A rating will be part of how we structure our approach.
On a personal level, when I see headlines about the government approving a new coal mine, I struggle to understand if we are all on the same page. I fear not. But when you are not happy about something taking action is vital — I guess it’s ‘about being the change you want to see’.
What’s next for 2023?
Our sustainability journey is still in its infancy and there are still plenty of learning curves to come. But we don’t view this negatively, as within everyone’s individual lives if we make a conscious and consistent effort to make changes, we are on the right track. That’s why this year we won’t be taking our foot of the gas when it comes to our ESG commitments. 2023 —watch this space!