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Operational impacts

Committed to reducing operational impacts through the establishment of long term targets

We established 10 year targets to manage energy consumption in our offices and branches worldwide in March. The targets are split into leased and owned properties in temperate and tropical regions, so that factors that affect the way energy is consumed in buildings are taken into account.

The new targets measure workplace energy consumption in terms of kWh/m2. We know from experience this is very practical as, being easily measurable, it facilitates benchmarking.  First year results show that we are ahead of 2011 interim targets.

Our Global Environmental Management System

We collected environmental performance data on outputs, such as energy, paper and water consumption, waste generated and carbon emissions from business travel, from 92 buildings in 30 countries, representing about 46 per cent of our total property portfolio.

Each building that reported environmental data is called a Global Environmental Management System (GEMS) building and is at least 25,000 sq ft.

An online database, Environmental Information Management System (EIMS), captured the data, allowing our Environment Committee to track progress by reviewing quarterly reports.

The environmental data was verified internally to ensure consistency and accuracy. This also provides an opportunity for Group Health, Safety and Environment to share good practices to streamline the data gathering process. As the verification programme adapted standards from the International Standards Organisation (ISO), it encouraged reporting sites to put in place processes that increased data quality and reliability.

Assessing our buildings to minimise their environmental impact

This year we implemented an internally developed rating system, the Building Environmental Assessment Standard (BEAS), to measure the operational environmental impacts of our buildings, ranging from environmental conservation features and indoor environmental quality to water and energy efficiencies. BEAS provides a simple tool to guide changes and drive environmental improvements in our property portfolio, particularly for the smaller premises. In addition, larger new builds or flagship offices are required to actively integrate green initiatives into designs and seek relevant green building certifications. For example, two new offices in Singapore received GreenMark Gold and Platinum awards. Our leasing criteria have also been reviewed to ensure they include environmental considerations as part of scoring for new builds.

The actions we took to manage energy in our GEMS buildings led to a 15 per cent reduction in energy use intensity, in terms of kilowatt-hours per unit area, this year. This translates into a 13 per cent reduction in carbon emissions per net floor area or a nine per cent reduction in carbon emissions per employee. We are investing in new air-conditioning equipment and energy efficient lighting systems. The energy saved from these investments last year was sufficient to supply electricity to more than 300 of our branches in Africa for a full year.

Positively influencing the behaviour of our supply chain through our procurement practices

Standard Chartered is committed to ensuring that, as a world class organisation, we operate high standards of social, ethical and environmental considerations in every aspect of our business. Our partners have sound ethical and business practices. Our vendor selection checklist and declaration ensures that our suppliers are aware that we base our decisions not just on price but also on their reliability, efficiency and ethical credentials.

Our consumption in 2009


paper bar chart

Whilst reducing our paper use in our operational hubs (such as Kuala Lumpur, in Malaysia, Chennai in India and Tianjin in China) is our top priority, there is huge potential for us to help our staff and customers print responsibly.

Between 2007 and 2009, we reduced our internal paper consumption by 28 per cent per full time employee (FTE).  Our dual pronged approach, which first targeted paper use in operations and then targeted our day-to-day office paper, has played a crucial role in driving down consumption.

Our Information Retention Management programme (IRM), a global standardisation archiving policy rolled out in 2008, played a major role in reducing paper use in our operations.  We also converted heavy duty workflow processes to electronic processes by investing $40 to $50 million in technologies such as FileNet, replacing paper documents with scanned online ones.

We reduced paper use in our day to day activities by replacing standalone printers, scanners and fax machines with multifunctional devices enabled with default double sided printing and pull printing options. This coincided with aggressive paper reduction campaigns in all countries, achieved by engaging country chief information officers and country environment committees, which included measures such as removing colour printing options in non-client facing units, promoting paperless meetings and technology such as SharePoint for efficient internal information collaboration online.

Our ambition is to halve our paper consumption between 2008 and 2011 and we work towards this goal.

Air Travel

air travel bar chart

We discovered in 2008 that 80 per cent of all air travel between five major locations was due to internal meetings. Consequently, this year we invested in state of the art audio and video conferencing technology, replacing physical boardrooms with telepresence facilities in five major locations. Further roll out is expected in 2010. We also reduced executive and senior management air travel, and tightened internal policies for junior and middle management. Almost 85.000 employees attended virtual meetings using our audio and web based conferencing tool, Standard Chartered Meeting Centre (SCMC) this year, and three out of ten claim it has replaced more than 25 per cent of face to face meetings.

Between 2007 and 2009, we reduced our air travel emissions by 24 per cent. Our ambition is to reduce air emissions by a further 35 per cent per full time employee between 2008 and 2011.


We invested in technologies aimed at greening our data centres this year by refreshing our server hardware. We joined the EnergyStar's Low IT Carbon campaign and launched a global desktop power management programme aimed at reducing energy consumption by desktops and notebooks. Guidelines to purchase and use energy efficient computers, laptops and appliances were issued.


In 2008, we partnered with Hewlett Packard (HP) to implement a Global Technology Asset Disposal programme, designed to reduce the volume of Information Technology waste committed to landfill. 99.97 per cent of the equipment we send to HP is recycled.


Case Study: Paper

We launched a Save for the future initiative in China in September to reduce paper consumption. Paper Saving Ambassadors from across the country gathered to brainstorm ideas.

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Annual Report and Accounts 2009