mac birmingham is committed to making arts an important part of people’s lives through work which pushes creative boundaries and encourages engagement with the arts on all levels. Rooted in our local economy and communities, we are committed to ensuring our work has a minimal impact on the environment, and where possible actively promotes sustainable ways of working.
1. To fully understand, monitor and control our environmental impacts and carbon footprint.
2. To create an Environmental Action Plan which tracks and measures these performances
3. To form a committed Green Group which meets quarterly at a minimum, where our performance is reviewed, appraised and future plans are evolved
4. To respond proactively to new legislation and find new approaches to sustainable models of work
5. To working collaboratively with other relevant organisations, sharing our performance and experience with transparency
6. To save money, which will then be re-invested into our work as a not-for-profit charity
7. Share this work with our stakeholders including visitors, staff, board and supporters.
1. Participate in, and achieve the following levels in external accreditation schemes or award nominations
a. Industry Green accreditation
b. Birmingham Sustainability Awards
2. Communicate our aims and impacts to staff and visitors using our green display in the public spaces, and digitally with a green group blog on our website.
3. Achieve a year on year reduction (target of 5% per annum) in our utilities consumption, when measured against our footfall levels. We will use Julie’s Bicycle to monitor this.
4. Share our learning and performance through active membership through the following networks
a. Sustainability WM
b. WM Green Network
5. Implement green procurements policies, encouraging suppliers and visiting artists to improve their sustainability performance particularly in relation to energy and resource use
6. Form an active group with our neighbouring venues to look at better use of shared resources. Propose the formation of a Birmingham Arts Partnership (BAP) Green Group.
This is made up of volunteers across mac. We meet regularly to discuss how to make mac more sustainable. We have developed an Environmental Policy and Environmental Action Plan.
Voltage Optimisation System
Installed January 2017, the Voltage Optimisation System will reduce mac’s emissions, saving 8.5%, an annual saving of 34.3 tonnes of co2 emissions per annum.
mac hosted its first Eco Festival in August 2016, offering free workshops and activities throughout the day. Local organisations including Friends of the Earth and were on hand to help the public increase their eco friendly credentials.
mac has had a 9.9-kilowatt solar PV system installed on the roof since 2012. It generates around 9000 kWh per year. The screen in our foyer shows a graph depicting the energy we have generated each day, and shows how much energy we have produced since the panels were installed.
mac have replaced lighting with low wattage LED alternatives in the First Floor Gallery, Terrace and Arena Galleries, Hexagon Theatre and kitchen. We have identified opportunities for upgrading to LED lighting elsewhere.
In June 2015, with funding from Birmingham City Council’s Top Cycle Location Grant, mac had a secure cycle shelter installed for staff.
Birmingham Cycle Revolution held a Dr Bike event. Staff were able to have their bikes serviced and security marked. Staff also attended bike maintenance training, which will be repeated in Spring 2017 due to its popularity.
mac have reviewed sandwich packaging and moved away from plastic to cardboard packaging, which is easier to recycle. mac only stock Fairtrade chocolate, coffee and hot chocolate and the coffee is also certified by the Rainforest Alliance. We source catering supplies locally wherever possible and have recently changed suppliers of alcohol, coffee and disposables from large organisations to smaller local companies – reducing emissions from transportation.
mac recycles used cooking oil as well as glass, plastics and cardboard. Last year we recycled over 8 tonnes of cardboard! We also recycle batteries and used lightbulbs.
- mac has gained a 3 (out of 5) star Creative Green Award from Julie’s Bicycle, which is a great result for a first assessment. See the full assessment here.
- We have also received a Birmingham Cycle Revolution Silver Top Cycle Location award for encouraging staff cycling.
- mac were the proud recipients of the Best Energy Reduction Award in the Education category at the Birmingham Sustainability Awards. mac’s application highlighted the many energy saving and waste reduction polices in place, which include
- High speed/low energy hand dryers installed in all washrooms
- Solar panels on our roof which generate over 9,000 units of green energy per annum.
- Self-closing taps that reduce waterflow.