Protecting the environment

Protecting the environment

Reducing our impact and promoting preservation

Climate change poses a great threat to the economy and society. To help address this, we work hard to reduce our environmental footprint and preserve biodiversity.

  • Sustainable action from within

    Our UK environmental initiatives are coordinated by a group of passionate employees and suppliers, called Team Green. This team of volunteers, which spans 15 of our offices, runs country-wide campaigns as well as local action.


  • An award-winning initiative

    We’re proud to set the bar higher when it comes to environmental best practice. External recognition includes 12 Corporation of London Clean City Awards for our waste management efforts.

Reducing our environmental impact

A business is only sustainable within a healthy natural environment, and we work hard to reduce our footprint. Our environmental programme focuses on six key areas of sustainability: energy, waste, water, air quality, sustainable procurement and sustainable travel.


Managing our waste

Our mantra is to avoid producing waste at all costs – and none of it should make to landfill.

Reducing our energy use

Since 2009 we’ve saved more than £2.2m on our energy bills, despite an increase in headcount.

Conscious use of water

Water is a precious resource, and we strive to use it responsibly.

Sustainable procurement

We source goods and services in a way that achieves value for money on a whole life basis.

Air quality and sustainable travel

We invest in effective alternatives to business travel, such as telepresence alternatives.

Managing our waste

Our waste policy is simple: none of it should make to landfill. Our mantra is to avoid producing waste at all costs – failing that, to reduce, reuse, recycle and, as a last resort, recover into energy through incineration.

To do that, we first look at what we consume and how. We then do everything we can to source and promote reusable alternatives to disposable products. As a result, 82% of our waste was recycled last year, 40% of which is recycled food waste which is turned into biofuel.

Reducing our energy use

We’re always looking at ways to reduce our use of energy, and to invest in renewable energy in our buildings wherever possible. For example, we installed smart electricity meters throughout our offices, and replaced our PCs with more energy efficient alternatives.

As a result, since 2009 we’ve saved more than £2.2m on our energy bills, and in 2016 alone we reduced our energy carbon emissions by 30%.

Conscious use of water

Water is a precious resource, and we strive to use it consciously. Throughout the majority of our UK offices, we run initiatives to save water, for example by adapting the showers and bathroom cisterns of our largest building so they dispense less water without compromising efficiency.

We also run education campaigns in our offices, for example in support of world water day, to help our people save water at home too.

Sustainable procurement

We’re as dedicated partners to our suppliers as we’re to our clients – it’s part of who we are. We work together so we can source goods and services in a way that achieves value for money on a whole life basis. This means that whatever we procure must benefit us, the society and the economy, whilst minimising damage to the environment.

An example of this is our sourcing and distribution of innovative reusable coffee cups, which helped reduce the number of disposable cups used in our offices by 87%. Our procurement process in general also includes social and environment clauses.

Air quality and sustainable travel

Air pollution is on the rise, and emissions from road traffic is one of its major causes. As a global organisation, our people need to travel regularly to meet client requirements. We invest, however, in effective alternatives to business travel, such as telepresence alternatives across our buildings.

On a local level, we also encourage more active travel, such as walking and taking public transport. We promote greener commutes for our employees, for example through a low-emission car hire scheme and cycle to work facilities. We include our travel footprint under scope 3 of our annual carbon footprint.

Some of our reductions


saved in energy bills since 2009, despite a 41% headcount increase

7.6 tonnes

of glass waste saved by introducing reusable bottles


reduction in disposable coffee cup waste by using sustainable alternatives

Investec environmental certifications

Environmental certifications

The environmental system of our largest office in the UK, with more than 1,500 employees, is ISO14001:2004 certified since 2012, while its energy system has the BSI Energy Reduction Verification Kitemark. This building was also the first in the financial sector to receive the Carbon Trust Waste Standard in 2014. This standard was regained in 2016, with the highest ever qualitative score.

Investec CSR promotes the air we share campaign

Air quality campaigns

Air pollution is responsible for up to 50,000 premature deaths every year in the UK. To help reduce its causes, as well as keep people safe, we launched an education campaign, the Air We Share, across all our UK offices in 2015, and followed up the following year with another campaign, Breathe Easy. These campaigns promoted behaviours to reduce staff exposure to external air pollution and reduce their contribution to it.  We were the first corporation in the UK to run such an initiative.

Investec CSR promotes the air we share campaign
Investec uses mugs to avoid disposable cups' waste

Disposable coffee cups

Five hundred billion disposable coffee cups are used globally every year. These end up in landfill or incineration, contributing to air pollution. In 2010 we used 134,000 disposable coffee cups in our own in-house coffee shop in London. As an environmentally responsible alternative to this, we sourced and started distributing and promoting the use of reusable mugs and KeepCups. To date, we’ve cut our disposable coffee cup waste by 87%.

Recent awards

Clean City Award by the City of London

Clean City Awards 2016 - our largest UK office received a Platinum Award, as well as the Cheapside Business Alliance Award.

Green Apple Award

Green Apple Awards 2016 - our largest UK office was awarded the nationwide Gold Green Apple award for our waste reduction initiatives.

Prolonging life on our planet

Tusk awards

We’re passionate about preserving biodiversity, and, in line with our values, support the sustainable existence of a diverse wildlife. One example is the prestigious Tusk Conservation Awards, which we sponsor and support.

Tusk awards
Stephen Koseff, CEO, Investec, on sustainability
“We build sustainable businesses that contribute not only to macro-economic stability but also to society and our natural environment”

Stephen Koseff, CEO, Investec

Download our policy statements

Energy management policy statement
Environment policy statement
Investec Group environmental policy statement

Get in touch

Teresa O'Brien

Corporate Responsibility - Environment

Contact us to find out more about our Out of the Ordinary corporate responsibility programme.

You may also be interested in:

Our communities

Our award-winning community programme focuses on education, entrepreneurship and the environment. 

Our people

It’s the passion and dedication of our people that enables us to deliver superior client service and value for stakeholders.

Operating responsibly

Our business decisions are driven by our values and the intention to live in society, not off it.

Corporate responsibility in action booklet

Corporate responsibility in action

Find out more about our activities

This booklet highlights some of the corporate responsibility projects that we support in the UK, Ireland, the Channel Islands and Switzerland, and the success stories behind them.