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The Duchy of Cornwall – First Rural Estate Gold CLO

November 2023 by The Duchy of Cornwall

Photo © Duchy of Cornwall /Charles Sainsbury-Plaice

The Duchy of Cornwall Achieves Gold Carbon Literate Organisation Status

Tuesday 28th November: Today, the Duchy of Cornwall has revealed its achieved Gold Carbon Literate Organisation status, after over half of its employees have become individually certified as Carbon Literate by The Carbon Literacy Project. The news follows the Duchy sharing its ongoing work with agricultural tenants to bring down the Estate’s emissions in order to achieve net zero by the early 2030s.

The Duchy of Cornwall is one of only 26 Gold-level or above Carbon Literate Organisations, and the first rural estate both to roll out Carbon Literacy training and achieve this accolade. The training, provided by Head of Sustainability, David Cope and accredited by The Carbon Literacy Project, has armed Duchy employees with the knowledge and skills required to create a positive shift in reducing carbon emissions for the organisation and in their personal lives. The training includes learning about climate change and encourages everyone to make tangible commitments on how carbon emissions can be reduced.

David Cope, Head of Sustainability at the Duchy of Cornwall, says: “This recognition as a Gold Carbon Literate Organisation is a reflection of how committed the Duchy is to moving swiftly towards net zero. We need to harness everyone’s ideas, energy and drive to achieve that goal. If we all work together in this way, communities and enterprises will flourish in support of a sustainable world.”

However, the focus is not only on Duchy employees, but also the Estate’s suppliers and development partners, as its Gold status extends the commitment to helping reduce emissions of the businesses it works with. The Duchy of Cornwall has, therefore, implemented a new Sustainable Procurement Policy, a collaborative project with Business in the Community (BITC), who will support in encouraging the Duchy’s suppliers to become more sustainable via training and support.

Belinda Goodman, Head of Responsible Business Advisory at BITC, says: “I’m delighted to see that the Duchy has equipped its employees with crucial sustainability skills, which will be essential in meeting the Duchy’s current and future sustainability ambitions. We believe that embedding sustainability across all areas of a business is critical to achieving positive societal and environmental progress, and are therefore looking forward to supporting the organisation on this journey.”

The Estate is confident that the Carbon Literacy training will help all its employees play their part in achieving its net zero goal. Previously, the Duchy’s 2022 Net Zero Carbon Report highlighted that farming contributes 62% of the Estate’s total carbon footprint, which spurred the organisation, under the guidance of Prince William, The Duke of Cornwall, to increase the available support for tenants to target emission reduction on farms. Now, with the inclusion of support for suppliers in partnership with BITC, employees, tenants and suppliers will all be able to share common goals around sustainability.

Phil Korbel, Co-Founder and Director Advocacy at the Carbon Literacy Project says: “Stepping up to achieve the speed and scale of climate action that’s needed to create a safe future has to start with enabling people to ‘do their best thing’. To see the Duchy of Cornwall, under the leadership of such a prominent climate advocate as Prince William, The Duke of Cornwall, become the first rural estate to become a Gold Carbon Literate Organisation is a really significant moment.”

Achieving Gold Carbon Literate Organisation Status will actively contribute to the delivery of the Estate’s vision of Sustainable Stewardship for Communities, Enterprise and Nature.

Read more about Carbon Literacy for Rural Estates – the Duchy story.

Watch back our webinar with the Duchy of Cornwall.

To learn more about how Carbon Literacy could work for you, get in touch at info@carbonliteracy.com.

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