Resource use and waste


Our approach
As an office-based company, our resource use and waste generation are relatively low. Nonetheless using fewer resources and producing less waste are clearly an opportunity to reduce costs, both for ourselves and for our clients.

Our strategy to reduce our resources and waste footprint is three-fold:
  • Use natural resources as efficiently as possible by reducing unnecessary consumption.
  • Promote the use of sustainable and renewable resources by encouraging our operating companies to use preferred suppliers selected by WPP.
  • Reduce the amount of waste we send to landfill by encouraging local arrangements for computer and furniture re-use and establishing recycling contracts for electronic waste and standard office consumables.
What we're doing
Paper sourcing and use:
In 2013, 24% of the paper we used for copying and printing contained at least 50% post-consumer recycled fiber. Our target is to increase that percentage to 50% by 2015. We have established preferred suppliers of recycled paper in our major markets, which our operating companies are encouraged to use. Our managed print program helps us to reduce paper use by 20 to 30% per location.

Water use:
In 2009, we launched a water conservation strategy that targets our largest locations in areas of waster scarcity. At 11 key locations, we are measuring our water consumption and establishing pilot projects for water conservation. Our target is to reduce water use per person by 20% by 2015 to 11.7 cubic meters. Our water conservation guidelines help our operating companies to reduce water use. We will use what we learn at these locations to inform how we manage water in other offices located in areas of water scarcity.

Office waste:
We have established preferred suppliers of recycling services for waste paper and standard office consumables in our major markets, which our operating companies are encouraged to use.

Our goal is for obsolete IT equipment to be refurnished and sold for reuse or, if this is not possible, to be broken down for recycling. Disposal is a last resort and must be done in compliance with local environmental regulations and data security best practice. We work with our global providers of IT waste disposal services to increase reuse and recycling and to dispose of our IT equipment safely.

We use mobile technology extensively and handsets are frequently upgraded. We have established preferred suppliers of recycling services for mobile phones in our major markets, which our operating companies are encouraged to use.

Our performance
For a full summary of our progress in these areas, read our latest Sustainability Report. The tables below provide key performance data on paper and waste since 2009 and on water since 2010:

Paper sourcing
  2013 2012 2011 2010 2009
Paper purchased with recycled content (%)
24 31 35 32 36

Recycled
  2013 2012 2011 2010 2009
Total waste recycled (tonnes)
5,106 4,886 5,681 4,740 4,594
Breakdown by category:



     Paper and cardboard
81 82 83 84 75
     IT waste (computers, mobile phones and cartridges)
3 3 3 3 4
     Other waste recycled
16 15 14 13 21



Water use
  2013 2012 2011 2010
Cubic meters per person
12.6
13.4
13.9 14.7

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For more information see the latest Sustainability Report