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Better World sustainability programme


The HealthPost Tree Planting Story

One of the joys of living and working in Golden Bay is being connected to the natural beauty that surrounds us. At HealthPost, we balance the busyness with beach walks on our breaks, bird-watching in our native garden, and celebrating the healing plants in our environment (kawakawa tea, anyone?).

Sustainable business practices are embedded in every aspect of our operations, every day. We believe that the wellness of the individual is always connected to the health of the community and the natural environment, and this holistic view affects everything we do. There is one particular day in the HealthPost calendar, however, when our values and the local environment come together in a special way: the annual HealthPost tree-planting.

Over the past seven years, we have given planting power to many special sites around Golden Bay, from bush to river to beach. As our business steadily grows, so do our annual planting efforts. (And so do our trees!)

The first tree-planting day in 2010 saw 500 rimu planted in Milnthorpe Park, a favourite recreational area only five minutes from our premises. Many of us now enjoy these head-height trees as we walk or run through the Park.  

From Milnthorpe, we moved east to the Motupipi Sand Spit, where for several years we contributed to a revegetation project managed by Coast Care. Devastated by fire prior to our planting efforts, this beautiful area is now on its way to becoming a rare example of the kind of coastal Totara forest that would once have been common.

In 2014 we went to the ‘wild west’ of Golden Bay, to the Mangarakau Swamp. The Nelson region’s largest remaining freshwater wetland, the Swamp is home to a variety of birdlife, from fernbird to bittern, over 30 species of orchid, and an array of aquatic life including frogs, rare fish and eels.

In 2015 we planted at Payne’s Ford, near the beautiful Takaka River. Boasting impressive limestone outcrops, Payne’s Ford is popular with climbers, picnickers and swimmers.

We feel privileged to have planted at such diverse and spectacular sites around Golden Bay in the past seven years, and grateful to the people who have directed our good intentions into tangible outcomes.

Tree Planting Map

HealthPost Carbon Forest

19th October 2016 marked the 7th annual HealthPost tree-planting, and the start of an exciting new chapter in the HealthPost tree planting story.

We purchased 25 hectares of fertile land at the start of the Bainham Valley and took the first steps toward creating a HealthPost Carbon Forest.

The undulating land is currently regenerating kanuka, home to weka and other native birds, and has been assessed by experts as appropriate for the establishment of a native podocarp forest. With registration through the ‘Permanent Forest Sink’ initiative, we will have our own, accredited revegetation project. HealthPost will continue to calculate, minimise and offset its carbon usage, and our Carbon Forest will play an important part.    

The terrain was untamed for the planting of 1000+ trees, including rimu, totara, and kahikatea. Fortunately, HealthPosties are a hardy bunch who rise to the challenge of breaking new ground! It’s so cool to see colleagues in gummies and overalls, driving spades into the ground with the same good-natured determination they show at the computer or the packing station. There is always a great atmosphere, with people looking out for each other as well as the flora and fauna. Happily exhausted at the end of the day, we celebrate our efforts with a shared meal.

Developing the same piece of land year-on-year we hope to have the satisfaction of seeing our trees become established and wildlife thriving in the renewed habitat. Watch this space!

Our annual tree planting is truly a highlight in the HealthPost calendar, and our appreciation goes out to our great team, who are always happy to get their hands dirty in a good cause.

And, of course, a huge thank you to our customers for supporting sustainable business.

Please click here to view photos from our previous tree planting adventures.


HealthPost goes solar!

Always on the lookout for new ways to minimise our environmental impact, we have now installed 72 photovoltaic panels on the roof of our premises. Check out the ‘Scoop’ here.

HealthPost's Solar Panels

Even on cloudy days we’re creating our own power. As of December 2012 these panels are producing 105% of our electricity needs, which means we can also feed power back into the grid!


Global Thinking: Offsetting our Carbon

At HealthPost we are committed to accurately measuring our carbon footprint, reducing and off-setting the carbon emissions produced by our parcel deliveries and daily operations, and minimising our impact on the environment wherever possible.
 

Our Emissions

Calculating carbon, we've discovered, is a reasonably complex business. To be sure that we're calculating our carbon emissions correctly, and that we are aligned with International Standards (ISO 14064-1), we've employed the help of carbon specialists, Catalyst R&D Ltd. In the form of the ACE calculator, Catalyst have provided us with a vital tool for measuring our own performance, enabling us to make comparisons from month to month, year to year, and thus set goals for improvement. Below is our most recent emissions profile (Emissions - tCo2e - 2011 -2012):

Emissions (tCo2e) 2011 -2012

Monitoring our emissions has prompted us to make small but significant changes to our operations. Almost all of our rubbish is recycled, right down to the compost scraps which are taken home by staff to feed chickens or pigs. We produce a very small amount of landfill for a business of our size (around two standard wheelie bins per week). Electricity and fuel usage are clearly our biggies: public transport isn't available in our rural location and staff travel up to half an hour to work, though most carpool in what is fondly known as ‘The HealthPost Bus’. Still more significant, of course, is the fuel involved in delivering parcels to our customers around New Zealand and beyond (although the fuel saved by people shopping online isn't entered into our equations). This is hard for us to reduce due to the nature of our business, but we make sure that the courier van is chockfull when it leaves our premises! We've been generous in all of our calculations, taking responsibility not only for our own carbon but for that of smaller businesses in our area who may be sharing the courier but who don’t have the means to offset their own emissions.
 

Carbon Offset

HealthPost offset its carbon emissions initially using credits from the Te Apiti Wind Farm in the Manawatu Gorge, the first wind farm in New Zealand to supply electricity directly into the national grid. Te Apiti generates electricity for up to 45,000 average homes with no harmful greenhouse gas emissions.

In 2015 HealthPost has offset its carbon footprint by purchasing credits produced by the Hinewai Reserve on Banks Peninsular. This 1000 hectare re-vegetation project is protected from browsing animals and pests and registered under the Permanent Forest Sink Initiative.

Please see below for the latest offset certificates.

New Zealand Emission Unit Register 2015 Airshed Certficate 2013 Airshed Certficate 2012 Airshed Certficate 2011 Offset the Rest
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