Matrix’s Green Strategy

Climate Emergency

Matrix recognises the climate emergency and biodiversity crisis.

We recognise the seriousness and urgency of the threat caused by climate change to the world’s population and its biodiversity.

We hereby commit to take immediate and continued action to mitigate as far as possible our impact on the environment, and to adapt to a more sustainable model of working with our organisation.

Our Actions

 We will:

  • Decrease our Scope 1 and 2 [1] carbon emissions to reach net zero carbon by or before the end of 2025.
  • Take active steps to reduce our Scope 3 emissions [2] as far as reasonably possible by the end of 2025.
  • Regularly assess the impact of our activities on the environment and report annually on our success against commitments 1 and 2.
  • Engage members and staff in decisions relating to our impact on the climate and encourage our members and staff to live in more environmentally sustainable ways.
  • Seek to use the law where possible to advance and support environmental protection and to protect against environmental degradation and increasing carbon emissions.
  • Collaborate with others, both within and outside the legal sector, to achieve these commitments.

Carbon Footprint, key goals and offsetting

Matrix measures its carbon footprint in compliance with DEFRA’s Greenhouse Gas (GHG) conversion factors on an annual basis.

In 2019, Matrix’s carbon footprint (including purchased energy [3]) was approximately 72 tonnes CO2 equivalent. In 2020-21 (September 2020-September 2021), Matrix’s carbon footprint reduced to approximately 31 tonnes CO2 equivalent, largely due to the effects of the pandemic.

In reaching net zero carbon, Matrix’s priorities are to reduce our energy usage and to switch to 100% renewable energy sources. It is our intention only to use carbon offsetting where it is not reasonably practical or possible to eliminate our emissions altogether.

As to Scope 3, Matrix’s longer-term aims are to send zero waste to landfill, to eliminate our use of single use plastics and to significantly reduce our water and paper consumption. We are also actively reviewing the sustainability of all parts of our supply chain to ensure that we purchase products from sustainable sources, wherever possible. We are working towards being able to monitor our Scope 3 emissions.

Monitoring and reporting

Matrix’s progress on Actions 1-6 above is overseen by the Green Committee which reports regularly to the Management Committee. The affordability of all proposed measures is reviewed by the MC, to ensure they remain in line with what is affordable for the business.

The Head of Facilities is responsible for reviewing energy consumption and cost data as available from utility bills, meter readings and energy suppliers, and for reporting to senior management and the Green Committee.

An Energy Performance Report is a standing item on the agenda for Green Committee meetings and includes energy usage data. Carbon footprint data is reviewed annually.

The Green Committee and the Facilities Team will continue to work together to devise a system for monitoring water consumption, paper usage, waste and travel as part of the Scope 3 actions.

Action plans

Action plans, including clear targets and budgets, are in place with detailed steps for implementing this Strategy. The Green Committee is responsible for creating and implementing these action plans, subject to approval of such plans by the MC.

Green Committee (GC)

 Matrix has a standing Green Committee whose overall purpose is to ensure that Matrix is performing against Actions 1-6 above. One member of the Management Committee will sit ex officio on the GC. The GC will:

  • Act as ‘Green Champions’, modelling and encouraging environmentally sustainable practices at Matrix;
  • Question current practices that may not be environmentally sustainable and put in place action plans to address such issues;
  • Collect, share and assess ideas regarding environmental initiatives (including consideration of any potential unintended consequences);
  • With the Management Committee’s approval, implement action plans (or form project groups to do so as necessary);
  • Communicate on, and be points of contact for members or staff with questions about, Matrix’s green initiatives and projects; and liaise with external groups / organisations as part of Action 6; and
  • Report on progress against Actions 1 to 6 annually to the MC as required and to the membership annually at the AGM (by way of a short written report).

[1] i.e. Scope 1 is directly produced emissions and Scope 2 is purchased energy.

[2] Scope 3 emissions includes water, waste, business travel and our supply chain.

[3] Gas and electricity make up Matrix’s Scope 1 & 2 emissions. This figure does not include any Scope 3 emissions currently; however, we estimate that business travel is a significant proportion of our Scope 3 emissions. Our available data (staff flights for 2019) is c. 45 tonnes CO2 but this does not yet include member flights or other types of travel. We are looking at this for 2020.