So many sustainable initiatives are unfolding in Zuidas
Reducing the district’s environmental impact is an ambition shared by many. Green Business Club Zuidas and its seventy active member organizations are tackling a range of sustainability issues in Zuidas. Here, we share some current projects.
Elbow-deep in rubbish
Last month it was time again for an avid crew of Zuidas professionals to dig into their offices’ residual waste. Not your usual start to the working week! Employees of ABN AMRO, Arcadis, Financial Offices and NautaDutilh gathered up rubbish-filled bin bags and got to work sorting through the contents under the guidance of Ecosmart, part of Renewi. Do teabags belong on the rubbish heap, or with organic matter? And that oil-stained pizza box from a late night at the office last week: recyclable paper, or plain old trash? There was also a Waste Lab in which participants got a hands-on demo of rubbish-related improvements to apply in the workplace. The Waste Lab was offered as part of Zero Waste Zuidas, a project to make Zuidas waste-free by 2030, jointly launched by Green Business Club Zuidas and the Amsterdam Economic Board. Other Green Business Clubs and Rijkswaterstaat’s VANG Buitenshuis programme are also actively involved in this mission.
Impact Cafés on CSR/ESG policy
Every six months, GBC organizes an Impact Café to bring members together and offer inspiration on CSR/ESG policy-related topics. The latest edition focused on House of Hospitality and highlighted the persistent gap between Zuidas and young people with vocational qualifications. ISS has been working hard at PwC and Accenture to narrow this gap in recent years. Edwin Klinkert of ISS and student Nadine Henningheim shared both sides of their experience with this project, which helps young people find their fit in the workplace and offers prospects for work placements, advanced training and employment. There was also time for a joint brainstorming session in which participants considered what companies in Zuidas can do to help young people find jobs. They talked about the obstacles and opportunities, including the pressures that the labour market shortage and other issues are putting on companies.
Circular HUB in Zuidas?
How can vacant plots in Zuidas be put to sustainable use? The Community Garden is one great example, but there’s another interesting possibility in the offing: a circular hub in Zuidas! How awesome would that be?! A showcase for circularity that’s open to the Zuidas community, with space for innovations by waste sector partners BNext.nl, Milieu Service Nederland and Renewi, and a spot to get a taste of circularity. In January, a group of Green Business Club Zuidas members, including the collectors mentioned above, ABN AMRO, RAI and Baker McKenzie, met with Amsterdam officials to brainstorm ideas for the temporary use of the vacant section of the Vivaldi zone. To be continued!
Circular Procurement Accelerator, round two
In 2022, over sixty participants completed the first run of the Circular Procurement Accelerator developed by PHI Factory. Results of this pilot were positive, so now it’s time for round two. Companies interested in future-forward procurement can sign up now. Purchasing professionals get theoretical knowledge that is directly applicable, in a fun format with active guidance and digital introductions to each theme. The next CPA starts in the third week of March and runs for 16 weeks. There are still some spots available.
Young professionals unite
Young professionals in Zuidas created their own core team within GBC last year. For their first theme they chose the ‘protein transition’ (about swapping animal proteins out for plant-based alternatives, for example in all company restaurants) which will be fleshed out into a project this year. More ideas were flying at a recent Young GBC gathering for drinks and networking. Such as to tie in with the Dutch Week Without Meat & Dairy, starting 6 March, for which GBC Zuidas has partnered with area catering suppliers. With food accounting for thirty per cent of the average organization’s carbon footprint in Zuidas, offices can make a big difference in their cafeterias!
For information about other projects on themes including the transition to plant-based proteins, climate adaptation, logistics in Zuidas and energy conservation progress, visit greenbusinessclub.nl/zuidas