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AHF publishes its updated Environmental Policy

22 March 2021
UK

Following a joint statement of intent with other heritage funders in 2020, the AHF is today publishing its Environmental Policy to set out the organisation’s commitments to addressing climate change.

As an organisation, we recognise that the historic environment has its part to play in:

  • mitigating climate change by making its contribution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions;

  • understanding and adapting to the challenges presented by a changing climate; and

  • communicating and engaging people with climate change and actions to reduce carbon emissions and adapt to changing climate.

     

    Our new policy is therefore committing us to:

  • Developing an action plan for the AHF as an organisation to reach carbon net zero before 2050 with a series of interim targets to achieve that goal. This will be reported on through our annual action plans and in our Annual Review. We will look to use our own learning to help inform the development of other’s approaches; 

  • Working with our clients and partners to help them understand the actions they can take in addressing climate change through their projects. We will make this part of our assessment criteria in making funding decisions; 

  • Collaborating with our partners to agree a set of measures aimed at understanding the effects of climate change on the historic environment, and how best to adapt to those changes, and mitigate the impacts where possible;

  • Ensuring the AHF’s assets and investments should be invested in line with the aims of the organisation and take account of ethical, sustainability and governance standards. We therefore expect our external Investment Manager to adopt an approach that ensures investments are in line with these aims.

Matthew Mckeague, AHF’s CEO, commented:

“The climate crisis is one of the gravest threats facing human life. All of us have a part to play in addressing this challenge, including organisations, big and small. We believe our work on the regeneration and adaptation of historic buildings is more vital than ever: not only safeguarding important heritage, but using these assets to create new spaces, avoiding the costly environmental damage arising from unnecessary demolition. There is no magic bullet for addressing climate change - a multitude of actions and activities are needed - but the long-standing methods of sustaining historic buildings – repair, adaptation, reuse – should be a central part of any set of solutions.”

You can read the full policy here