Climate Action Plan

A photo of the exterior of Watershed, a long, low ex-warehouse building overlaid with a green tint

Climate Action Plan

This action plan outlines 2024's priorities and potential actions across Watershed.

This is a live document, intended to be built upon and changed as:

  • We collect data which helps us understand our emissions better
  • We reflect on how we best work to achieve and measure success
  • New staff join
  • New technologies develop
  • Climate action is embedded across all areas of our organisation through training

The actions are outlined with the intention of reducing our emissions, but also to create an inclusive ethos around sustainability and supporting responsible decision making.

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Our Journey So Far

We have learned there is essential grounding work necessary to create a solid basis for transformative sustainable action across the organisation. Through 2022 and 2023, we have worked on creating and embedding a solid base for action and creating capacity and tools across teams to energise participation across our diverse organisation.

As 2022 was our first year of cross-organisational action, we continued to check in on capacity and progress, to understand the suitability of our method of defining specific actions, and how the process might be further adapted.

In 2023, our priorities focused on this grounding work, as well as research into areas which will enable us to undertake action in the years going forward. While our focus on grounding work may not immediately reduce emissions, it has created the foundations for carbon reduction going forward. We focussed on embedding climate action across the organisation and developing processes to resource and support action at all levels.

We are dedicated to environmental sustainability, but recognise we can’t do everything at once. We are focussing our capacity and resources into areas with the highest impact and the ones over which we have most influence.

Find out more about Watershed’s carbon footprint


Our 2024 priorities

We have refined and focused our priority areas of action based on the results of our new in-depth carbon accounting model and processes.

  1. Our Building

    Around 38% of emissions analysed during this study are from utilities to run Watershed’s space (electricity including servers, gas and water). With direct control over our scope 1 and scope 2 emissions, this will be a priority focus for us in the coming years. Decarbonising a Grade II Listed building is no mean feat and will require significant capacity and resource to undertake.

    Actions

    • Begin fundraising for a Fabric First Retrofit.
    • Reducing Carbon Intensity through connecting to Bristol’s district heating system in 2028.
    • Creative engagement with building-users to reimagine space.
    • Reducing demand side consumption.
    • Sharing learnings and engaging in collective action through Arts Council England.
    • Joining the Transforming Energy Capital Development programme.
  2. Procurement

    We now know almost 59% of emissions come from purchased goods and services (including food and drink) procured. Our kitchen and Café & Bar teams are working hard to measure our food and drink emissions as accurately as possible. With a new focus on reducing our Scope 3 emissions from procurement, we will be experimenting with a mix of actions.

    Actions

    • Adopting a Plant First menu
    • Developing our ethical procurement guide/matrix, alongside useful case studies for staff.
    • Engaging with our suppliers and creating preferred suppliers list based on the ethical procurement guide/matrix.
    • Focus on training and engagement for all staff around sustainable decision making.
  3. Organisational change

    We have developed a strong basis for action over the last two years and key for us is retaining this through training, measurement and resourcing.

    Actions

    • Continue Carbon Literacy Training for all new starters, potentially increasing the amount of training slots available.
    • Maintaining and improving our new carbon accounting methodology and process, and reporting these publicly.
    • Resource the upscaling of team action through our Small Projects Fund.
    • Recruit more members across teams to the Environment Group.
    • Engage our audiences in decision making.
    • Continue to report publicly to Julie’s Bicycle and Bristol Climate Leaders.
  4. Projects, programming and collective action

    We firmly believe culture and creativity have a crucial role to play in the transition to a just green society. As part of our commitment to collective action, we will continue to use our projects, programmes and resources to engage our communities and resourcing others.

    We will:

    • Ensure in our university partnership projects we integrate climate action into our research and production across projects.
    • Continue to ensure the resources we produce are open-source, and support our community of Pervasive Media Studio Residents and partners to go on this journey with us.
    • Programme exciting events and films around climate action and climate justice across our public programme.
    • Work as part of Bristol Climate Leaders to energise collaborative change across the city.
    • Embed a climate action plan into the design of our new immersive exhibition space, Undershed, with aims of being a test site and case study for the sector.

Feedback

We welcome your feedback, ideas and challenges.

Please contact us