Minister for work and pensions Baroness Hollis said:
'By 2000 - nine years early - the department for social security (as was) exceeded the government target on using energy from renewable sources.
'The department for work and pensions is actively engaged in supporting the most vulnerable sector of society, and in promoting economic growth and tackling social exclusion, aims which are clearly in line with the objectives of sustainable development.'
The report, Sustainable Development, Energy and Environment, attests to past achievements, as well as pointing to further plans in the quest for increased sustainability.
Future long-term strategies include using 'combined heat and power' units to save energy, and plans to maximise the recycling of waste paper to meet the government's recycling targets.
Sustainable Development, Energy and Environment is part of the department for work and pensions' contribution to the UK Strategy for Sustainable Development. The report is available from the DWP website.
Sustainable development (SD) can be defined as 'Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs' or, put more simply, as 'ensuring a better quality of life for everyone, now and for generations to come.'
The UK Strategy for Sustainable Development has four main objectives:
1) Social progress that meets the needs of everyone
2) Prudent use of natural resources
3) Effective protection of the environment
4) Maintenance of high and stable levels of economic growth.
DWP is improving sustainability and reducing its environmental impact by:
-ensuring its public sector agreement targets actively contribute to the social and economic objectives of sustainable development
-ensuring that all new and revised policies and change initiatives are screened for SD and environmental impacts, and that these impacts are minimised wherever possible
-the ongoing development of environmental management systems to ISO 14001 standard
-exceeding the government's renewable energy target nine years early
-the initiation of energy 'spend to save' capital investment projects in our largest 100 buildings, which aim to reduce energy consumption by an average of 16%
-maximising the amount of recycling of waste paper, furniture and other products
-integrating SD and environmental issues into procurement policy (ie, timber, stationery and IT)
-delivering 288 green transport plans
-holding a senior managers' SD conference and initiating a staff awareness campaign
-publishing its first annual report on sustainable development, energy and the environment