Eco Made Easier at B&Q

by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

This autumn and winter B&Q is dedicated to helping the country to go green by making it easier. Taking small steps can save energy, time and money. So what could be more appealing than this, with the exception of getting something for free?

A sustainable approach to life and doing the right things should not be difficult, and that is why B&Q, as Britain's biggest home improvement retailer, is doing all it can to make things easier.

B&Q's goal is to help customers to reduce their eco-footprint – and I really like the way that B&Q does not use carbon footprint but instead considers our entire impact by calling it eco-footprint – by ten percent by the year 2023 and is making this target easier with:

  • PRODUCTS; There are now over 4,000 accredited products in the One Planet Home® range.

  • ADVICE; by the end of 2010, there should be a fully trained Eco Advisor in every store. B&Q Eco Advisor qualification – and eco NVQ – is a UK first and will see staff qualified to City & Guilds Level 2 Diploma in Retail Skills (selling Eco products) standards enabling them to advise and help customers on eco products for their homes.

  • ONLINE; To make One Planet Home even more accessible, it is also online at, providing hundreds of products with hints, tips and tools. The web pages include the One Planet Home calculator, which gives customers their own personalized action plan.

B&Q's 10 per cent target was set with sustainability experts “BioRegionals” and it is a stretching. This target is based on detailed analysis of what customers could achieve with B&Q's products and services.

BioRegional accredit all the products and services in the One Planet Home range and this range has been developed to help B&Q customers to create their own One Planet home.

The accreditation process makes sure that every One Planet Home product is in line with B&Q's principles and ethics policy and is made by suppliers who are working to reduce their own impact.

Five easy steps towards a One Planet Home®

  • Keep the heat in

  • Keep the cold out

  • Fit energy saving products

  • Upgrade your heating

  • Line dry your laundry

Over 50 percent of the UK's waste goes to landfill sites every year. That's an enormous 111 million tonnes of rubbish.

B&Q is actively looking at ways of using recycled materials to stop waste is going to landfill.

The new carpet underlay is a perfect and prime example of how recycling works. It is as effective as any other underlay but is created from 100 percent recycled clothing which would have otherwise ended up in a landfill. Using underlay correctly can also keep rooms warmer, so it is a winner all around.

The recycled underlay is available from 284 B&Q at £29.80 per 10sqm pack, making it a £2.98 per square meter.

Other news for this autumn from B&Q is the introduction of the company's fist ever Fairtrade bedlinen.

The linen is created from cotton from Pakistan and available in white or cream and will be available from 100 B&Q stores across the UK from August 2010.

B&Q's Fairtrade bedlinen costs from £6.98 for a pillowcase.

Have a look down to your local B&Q and check out the One Planet Home range. Some stores have a fully fledged Eco Store on board, such as the one in the London Borough of Sutton, and the Eco Advisor on duty there will certainly be able to point you into the right direction.

© 2010