IH InTuition have taken the environmental bull by the horns, making the bold commitment to be carbon negative from 2021. This means they will more than offset the carbon emissions from their operations.
For IH InTuition, international travel is a big driver of its carbon footprint. Students travel from their own country to a homestay location in the UK, Ireland or Malta, and learn 1:1 with their hosts.
Starting in 2020, IH InTuition carbon offset this by an explicit fee added to all student bookings of just £12. This has been calculated by the Carbon Offsetting company Clear, and the offsets are used by them to support hundreds of high quality sustainable projects in most regions of the world, from Ecuador and Brazil, to Tanzania and Thailand. (Students can choose not to accept this charge, perhaps if they already make an offset contribution through their own airline.)
As well as student travel, the school has committed to pay the offset fee for all staff business trips and is encouraging all its tutors to use public transport or bicycles for excursions and activities where possible.
In terms of reducing overall carbon footprint, the school is committed to using 100% renewable energy at its head office. Since January 2020 energy has been supplied by UK energy supplier Octopus Energy, who commit that “All our electricity comes from 100% renewable sources like sun, wind and water”.
All these actions are ambitious. But the small things add up to make a big difference as well and are definitely worth doing. Cutting down on paper in the office (the IH InTuition head office now runs as a paperless operation) and foregoing the printing of marketing brochures and leaflets have been easy savings to make. Tutors are encouraged to use local produce in season and consider a meat-free day once a week. Tutors are also receiving training on incorporating environmental messages into their courses, and it is the intention that ones who meet certain criteria will be able to register as “Green Hosts” later in 2021.
For the ambition which IH InTuition is showing and the everyday actions it takes, we are delighted to award them the IH Protecting our Planet badge. Congratulations!