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The office: ethical about business

spring 2010

From CMF news - spring 2010 - The office: ethical about business [p02]

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With greater interest about climate change and the response required, CMF is now getting occasional enquiries about 'carbon footprint' issues and about ethical trading. For example: 'Could CMF let its members know…what the office is doing to reduce its CO2 emissions, and any Fairtrade involvement? (From a member, December 2009.) Let me summarise CMF's current activities in these areas.

1. 'Climate change' issues

Energy and water usage

Each month we track consumption of:

  • Gas. We have just installed a new more efficient boiler.
  • Electricity. All staff watch consumption.
  • We solely use low energy bulbs.
  • Water. We use relatively little, but would rapidly become aware of any leaks.


We recycle almost everything we can, though there are costs involved:

  • 'Quality' white paper. CMF has recently registered with Paper Round, founded by Friends of the Earth in 1988, and now a standalone company which donates to Friends of the Earth and works closely with the charity Trees for Cities. Paper Round ( has given away £100,000 to environmental charities over the last 15 years. CMF pays a fee to recycle 'quality' white paper, metal cans, and plastic containers.
  • 'Other' paper. CMF pays an environmental collector contracted to Southwark Council.
  • Plastic. Containers are recycled.
  • Metal cans are also recycled.
  • Used toner cartridges. Recycled at no cost.
  • Obsolete equipment. All obsolete IT equipment, furniture and miscellanea left over after the move in 2007 was recycled.
  • Use of recycled paper. We have just started using 100% recycled, 100% biodegradable window envelopes where the window film is made from plants. Subject to satisfactory performance, we will move entirely to such envelopes.
  • Reduced paper mailings

    We make as many member communications as possible by email, and handle as many financial transactions as possible electronically – direct debiting; internet banking; joining, conference booking and publication sales online; etc.

    Printing and distribution of periodicals

    • Paper used is the most environmentally sound available, using vegetable based inks and water based sealants.
    • Paper quantities have been progressively reduced by regular stock control reviews.
    • Fuel used during freighting. Since 2009 we have employed single project management of the printing and mailing out of our four regular periodicals. Compared with the previous arrangements where the printer was a substantial distance from the two different mailing operations used, vans freighting loads of print material weighing 250-500kg now move about 200 miles less, for each of the three mailings per year.

    Fuel efficient travelling

    We would in any case seek to reduce CMF expenditure (as well as reducing environmental impact) by the most efficient means of staff travel – such as train travel with 'Saver' tickets, and staff sharing cars wherever possible.

    2. 'Trading justice' issues

    • Bulk catering. All the tea and coffee we purchase for bulk catering for staff, meetings and conferences is 'Fairtrade'.
    • Other 'ethical supplier' issues. Regarding purchasing other items for office purposes, we are not aware of any concerns such as those of medical equipment being produced by developing world workers paid slave wages.
    • 'Ethical investments'? CMF has no stocks or shares. Cash is 'invested' mainly at Charities Aid Foundation.

    It is good stewardship as well as good for the environment and social justice to follow these practices. Sometimes these save on CMF expenditure anyway; sometimes we have to pay to be 'green'.


    Alex Duncan – MBE
    Eleanor Duncan – MBE
    Mick Leach – FRCGP
    Murray McGavin – MBE


    Rachel Caswell (Dublin TCD) to Tanzania
    Victor Hu (Dublin TCD) to Tanzania


    Helen Nabwere (Nottingham) from Kenya


    John Corcoran (q Manchester 1956; d late 2009) lived in Bath.

    Muriel Crouch (q Royal Free 1940; d 12 January 2010). Becoming a pioneering woman consultant in general surgery at the South London Hospital, Muriel was a particularly active servant of the early CMF, inspiring and encouraging many. She retired to Norfolk.

    Ben Walkey (q The Westminster 1941; d 21 December 2009) became a missionary surgeon for leprosy patients in India, touring the UK to encourage students while on furlough. Retiring to Leicester, he asked CMF for specific information so that he could pray.

    Sir James Watt (q Durham 1938; d 28 December 2009). A surgeon with a distinguished naval war record, he became Medical Director General of the Royal Navy. He was heavily involved in Christian activities in the Navy, and was on CMF's Council of Reference. 'His private devotional life remained paramount in his daily living.'

Article written by Marcus Watkins

More from CMF news: spring 2010

  • Raising up workers
  • The office: ethical about business
  • A changing team
  • Graduate team growing
  • Please tell us about yourself...
  • the wider horizon
  • Eurasia
  • Allied professions
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