As a charity that exists to promote sustainable development, we are very keen to lead by example when it comes to our environmental and social impacts.

Forum’s key environmental and social impacts result from its: 

  • Core work with partners and others on system change;
  • Operations (i.e. staff, buildings, travel and supply chain).

Our operations generate negative impacts (for example carbon emissions) but also positive ones, including allowing Forum to enable change on a global scale.

Forum’s environmental management system has been in place for over 15 years. The most material environmental impact from our operations is the carbon footprint from aviation. In 2018 we produced 218 tonnes (2017: 185 tonnes) of carbon dioxide. We recognise that a certain amount of travel is critical to engaging with partners and driving the change we want to see in the world. We remain convinced that we can, over time, deliver far bigger wins for sustainability as a whole – including carbon reduction – by having our expert staff working internationally, helping organisations in Asia and in the US achieve their own transformative shifts, than if we were to avoid a small number of flights by not doing this work. Nevertheless, we seek to avoid unnecessary travel, use virtual meetings extensively and, when flying is required, maximise the benefit by arranging multiple meetings.

We are committed to investing in carbon offsets for our own operations in order to remain carbon neutral. In 2018 we purchased 200 offsets from ClimateCare which were invested in their Gyapa stoves project. This project introduces the Gyapa to families in Ghana. An efficient cookstove, the Gyapa cooks food more quickly, requires 50% less fuel and produces less smoke, meaning it not only cuts carbon emissions but reduces exposure to toxic fumes. Cutting fuel requirements saves families as much as $100 dollars annually, at the same time protecting Ghana’s dwindling forests.