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Virgin Active goes green to help climate change

Virgin Active South Africa has partnered with the Green Building Council South Africa (GBCSA) to sponsor a Net Zero Rating Tool.

Committed to zero environmental impact by 2030 across its 143 clubs in Southern Africa, the health club group is already making operational changes to reduce water consumption and waste; switching to renewable energy to drive down carbon emissions; and eliminating solid waste by recycling.

SA MD, Ross Faragher-Thomas said, “This long-term partnership with GBCSA is a key driver that will steer our sustainability journey. It is imperative that businesses assume a leadership position and conduct operations in an environmentally-responsible manner. The Net Zero Standard and Certification path adds a level of accountability for us.”

The brand will use the tool to drive awareness on an operational level at 143 clubs, enabling a rating at each individual club across the different net zero categories of carbon, water, waste and ecology.

Tackling climate change requires collective effort, and the GBCSA has added this pilot rating tool to its stable to raise awareness of the importance of businesses making operational changes and applying for ratings according to water, waste, carbon and ecology.

Further to this sponsorship, the health club group has committed to setting company-wide emissions targets in line with climate science. From the date of signature, they will have 24 months to calculate carbon emissions and submit targets. Science-based targets will ensure that Virgin Active South Africa’s journey to low carbon is aligned with climate science.

Alongside the Net Zero ratings, the group will continue to evaluate the environmental efficiency of their club interiors. Recently, Virgin Active Collection Silo District at the V&A Waterfront was awarded a 4 Star Green Star SA rating. This certification is the third for them, following Alice Lane and Menlyn Maine, and is testament that not only are these clubs distinct from a design perspective, but also provide a healthy workout environment in which to achieve fitness goals.

Author: Pedro van Gaalen

When he’s not writing about sport or health and fitness, Pedro is probably out training for his next marathon or ultra-marathon. He’s worked as a fitness professional and as a marketing and comms expert. He now combines his passions in his role as managing editor at Fitness magazine.

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