The collective size of the UK estate of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office is 90,887 square metres gross with a total of 3,474 UK based staff. Following an estate rationalisation exercise in 2001-2, the FCO now has only two main office buildings in central London, housing approximately 78% of UK staff. Hanslope Park in Buckinghamshire accommodates a further 20%.
The remainder of the UK estate consists of the Lancaster House conference and events centre, and Carlton Gardens, the official residence of the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs.
The FCO has one Executive Agency, Wilton Park (an international conference and events centre). This has one building of 2,326 square metres with 66 staff.
The FCO also has 232 overseas Posts, some of which also accommodate UK officials from Other Government Departments including MOD and DFID.
The main sustainable development impacts in relation to the operation of the FCO UK estate are Energy Use, Water Use, Waste, Procurement and Travel. A breakdown of these is contained in the attached table of priorities.
Scope of Framework Commitments
The commitments of the Framework for Sustainable Development will be applied to the whole of the FCO UK estate, although timescales may vary depending on the location and nature of the site.
Overseas Posts are encouraged to operate in ways which reflect the FCO environmental policy. (See Policy Statement on Operations and addendum.) Several have undertaken local environmental initiatives. However, it would require disproportionate resources to apply the Framework targets to the whole of the overseas estate with immediate effect. 38% of Embassies, High Commissions and Consulates have 4 or less FCO staff and 9% have only 1.
Publishing Delivery Plans
The FCO will formulate delivery plans for each suite of targets in the Framework for Sustainable Development within 4 months of their announcement. These will be published on the FCO website.
The following statements on lines of responsibility and resources required are applicable to all aspects of the UK estate for which Framework targets have been set or are planned.
|Lines of responsibility (PDF, 52K)|
Environmental performance improvements will be met from within existing resources. They will be implemented as part of planned development and / or maintenance programmes over a number of years. We will monitor the position regularly. Since June 2003 Personnel Directorate has had a dedicated Projects Officer who is covering Sustainable Development as part of their job.
Personnel Directorate's objectives cover many areas to be incorporated in the social aspects strategy, including health and safety, staff development, pay and allowances, manpower planning, equality and diversity. Personnel Directorate will draw up their Social Aspects Strategy after the targets are published by DEFRA.
The Environmental Managers will be using our new FCO IT system, PRISM, as well as a new Environmental Management IT programme, Envoy, and a staff feedback system (in part via our new eco-FCO staff Discussion Group) to help us monitor progress. New contracts that are drawn up with the FCO will incorporate clauses requiring the contractor to monitor environmental impacts.
The strategies will include details of:
- Data collection systems to measure progress
- Baseline performance data, where available, or plans for its collection
- Mechanisms to improve performance
- Milestones and review dates
Environmental Management Systems
The FCO will implement Environmental Management Systems (EMSs) across its UK estate certified to, or based on, ISO14001.
The FCO has already made good progress towards the completion of Target A3. The FCO Main Building Environmental Management System (EMS) achieved certification to ISO14001 in August 2002 It is subject to annual re-audit by external auditors and was successfully re-audited in October 2003. The EMS was extended to the Old Admiralty Building in March 2003 and was certified to ISO14001 in December 2003. The EMS now covers 78% of staff and an extension to our rural site at Hanslope Park in late 2004 will ensure that 98% of staff are covered.
Provided some outstanding issues can be resolved, we plan to adopt the Envoy software system to reduce the resources required to develop and maintain an EMS.
The FCO reports on progress towards sustainable development targets in its annual Departmental Report and the 'Sustainable Development in Government Report', prepared by DEFRA.
Progress towards Framework for Sustainable Development Targets will also be published on the FCO website in accordance with Target A2. Performance data is verified through a system of internal and external auditing.