October 2018: The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) announce that we have 12 years to act in order to keep global temperature rises within 1.5 degrees of pre-industrial levels, and this is needed if we want to avoid catastrophic climate change.
Whilst Locate has always been aware of the ever-growing threat of climate change, this announcement felt like a real wake-up call and since then we’ve been working hard to reduce our carbon emissions and minimise our impact on the planet.
To achieve this, we’ve created a culture where sustainability is integral to what we do. We’ve teamed up with like-minded companies and suppliers to learn more, share ideas and find solutions for a low-carbon industry, as well as supporting organisations and industry bodies.
Outlined below are some of the efforts we’re making throughout the production process to reduce our carbon emissions as well as supporting re-wilding & bio-diversity projects.
We use Good Energy as our electricity and gas supplier for our office in Clapham. This is through the Creative Energy Project set up by Albert and helps save approx. 3.2 tonnes of CO2 annually. Switching energy supplier to 100% renewables is the single easiest and biggest impact thing we can do. It has minimal cost implications, is very quick and has significant emission savings.
We use Erjjio Studios for our web hosting company as they’re powered using renewable energy. Research has shown that on a global scale, the internet contributes to a similar amount of CO2 as air travel.
We use Ecosia as a search engine who plant trees in return for the amount of searches it carries out.
We minimise printing, recycle and compost where possible so as to minimise our waste to landfill.
For couriers, we use Pedalme who provide a 90% reduction in carbon emissions compared to petrol or diesel vans. Since we started using them, they’ve covered more than 398km for us.
We use Zipcar in conjunction with public transport to minimise the distance travelled by car.
We treat air travel as a last resort and encourage train use over car or plane travel wherever possible.
In 2020, prior to the COVID-19 lockdowns and travel restrictions, we used the train for journeys to Kendal, Glasgow, Madrid and Venice, saving hundreds of kilograms of carbon.
Approx. CO2e emissions from London to Kendal, Lake District
Train: 15.41 kg
Medium petrol car: 75 kg
Plugin Hybrid Electric: 1.35 kg
Full Electric: 1.97 kg
Approx. CO2e emissions from London to Madrid (via Barcelona and Paris)
London – Paris 2.07 kg
Paris – Barcelona 4.97 kg
Barcelona – Madrid 3.70 kg
Where budgets and time allow, we’re trialling Portable Electric’s VOLTStack batteries instead of portable generators on shoots. However, energy efficiency depends largely on how the batteries are charged and the transport emissions involved in the delivery and collection.
We aim to use local caterers who provide seasonal, vegetarian menus. A vegetarian meal has a footprint of roughly 0.86 kg. If the protein source is then swapped with meat or fish there is an increase, peaking with beef, which can have a footprint of approx. 12kg:
Fish – x 1.6 greater
Chicken – x 1.8 greater
Pork – x 2 greater
Lamb – x 6 greater
Beef – x 14 greater
We have re-usable water bottles and KeepCups, plates and cutlery.
We work with City Harvest and for any leftover food from shoots to minimise food waste and help others less fortunate. We also use Olio, which connects neighbours and local business so as not to waste leftover food or props/sets/costume..
When shooting on location, we use Quantum Waste, a socially responsible waste collection company, to help us recycle.
Our sister company and equipment supplier, Gripvan has an electric delivery bike and encourages the use of one van for multiple departments so reducing the amount of vehicles on set.
For cabs, we use Green Tomato Cars as they double offset all emissions and are London’s only dedicated zero emission service.
We add an optional ‘1% for the Planet’ line item to our invoices which goes to supporting bio-diversity projects and help ‘drawdown’ on carbon that already exists in the atmosphere. At present we’ve partnered with Forests Without Frontiers who are helping reforest the Carpathian Mountains in Romania. Over a 12 month period between November 2019 - November 2020, we helped plant more than 3,894 trees. We don’t class this as offsetting as we feel that to reach net zero by 2030 we need to reduce our emissions whilst at the same maximising our support for re-wilding and biodiversity projects.
We carry out carbon calculations for shoots using Alberts carbon calculator software. Following calculations on 17 productions across 2019 - 2020 our findings show that Transport equates to approx. 70-80% of our emissions. By carrying out carb0n calculations on our productions it helps us recognise the high polluting areas in order for us to change our production methods to be more sustainable.
Outside of production, we are also active in supporting organisations and industry bodies that are working towards a zero carbon future:
We are an affiliated member of Albert and carried out carbon literacy training in 2019 with our staff and regular freelance crew.
We make us of AdGreen's online resources and have attended their free Sustainable Production training and have hosted our own carbon literacy training workshops. AdGreen are part of the Ad Association and are the leading initiative when it comes to advertising production.
We attend events and support the Purpose Disruptors including the Great Reset campaign - a group of ad industry insiders whose aim is to use the advertising industry as a means for creating positive change in the fight against the climate crisis.
We contributed towards the Ad Net Zero (PDF) report launched in November 2020 which outlines the Advertising Association’s commitment to reaching (real) Net Zero by 2030. It's an exciting proposal based on 5 key action areas:
We attended the Create & Strike climate strike joining millions around the world by closing our office for the day and attending the climate strikes in 2019.
We support CutIt an initiative set up by crew to reduce the impact of the film and TV industry.