A Sustainable Xmas with Bethan Rose: Target measuring, plastics and charity

Evenlode investment analyst talks adapting to work from home, having a veggie Christmas and reusing wrapping paper

It has been an astonishing year, one that none of us could ever have predicted and the remainder doesn’t look much more appealing with the festive season with our extended family and friends in jeopardy.

To lighten the mood, we wanted to find out from ESG investment professionals the achievements and lessons learned in 2020. We also asked how they will be making their festivities sustainable and their New Year’s resolutions to protect the planet and society.

In this article, we speak to Bethan Rose, investment analyst at Evenlode Investment.

What are your biggest personal and professional achievements this year?

Following the loss of our cat Mowgli during the first lockdown in April, we decided to start fostering for a local animal charity. It has been amazing to see the different personalities come through the door as well as the joy in finding them their forever homes. It also means I have had several different working from home partners walking across my keyboard at any given opportunity. Additionally, the pandemic has made it tough for local charities in terms of raising money and finding homes given the lockdown restrictions so it feels good to help where we can.

In terms of work, it has been amazing how quickly we have been able to adapt the business to work from home and as a team we have really pulled together. It has also been great to welcome many new members to the Evenlode team as well as continue to have good communications with both clients and companies thanks to the likes of Zoom and Microsoft Teams.

In ESG, what has had the biggest impact this year?

The push across the spectrum on goal setting and target measuring. This is of increasing importance across the board as we have seen governments talk about net-zero targets as well as large multinational companies embrace the UN Sustainable Development Goals and set targets accordingly. All of which helps make a difference in tackling issues such as climate change and plastic pollution.

What is a major positive change that your business has introduced permanently as a result of the pandemic?

As a team it has been incredible how quickly we have adapted to the working from home environment and as a company the increased flexibility around when and where you work has been a huge positive. We have all been encouraged to take a break, go for a walk, run or cycle to help maintain a comfortable balance between working and relaxing.

How will you be having a sustainable festive period?

I am already someone who doesn’t eat meat and rarely eats dairy products, sticking to mostly plant-based eating. Although Christmas is a time for indulgence, it will still be a veggie Christmas for myself, and I will also be encouraging my family members to eat more greens.

Our family always reuses ribbon, bows and wrapping paper. This has stemmed from my grandmother (who is 94) as she has always championed reusing anything you can. We currently have a family shoebox of re-used ribbons that comes out every year for present wrapping.

What is your go-to winter holiday routine and what’s your back-up plan for this year?

Pretty much every year it’s a small family gathering that includes myself, my partner, my father, brother, and step siblings. This year given we decided to cancel our trip to Greece in August and rebooked a holiday to the Lake District over the Christmas period with several others. However, given that would mean different households mixing we have decided we’ll be staying at home in Oxfordshire after all. So, Christmas will be the same as it always is for us.

What’s your sustainability New Year’s resolution?

Usually when I pop to the supermarket, I like to make sure I take reusable shopping bags however, there is the odd occasion when I make it to the shop and realise I have forgotten to put them in the car, which means I have to buy the odd plastic bag. This year my sustainability New Year’s resolution is to not buy a single plastic bag and to remain consistently prepared with back-up reusable bags in my car.

What’s your big prediction for next year in the ESG space?

Fingers crossed that 2021 is the year where things may start to feel a bit more normal. It feels like it could be a year for reflection and refocus and as a consumer on what we want to see from companies in terms of ESG. This would hopefully include ambitious and measurable goals but also products and services that offer increasingly sustainable options.

See also: – 

A Sustainable Xmas with Dan Bland: Managing risk, carbon footprints and advent calendars

A Sustainable Xmas with Hannah Simons: Net zero, inequality and Zoom carols

A Sustainable Xmas with Yuko Takano: Games, electric cars and diversity

A Sustainable Xmas with Diane Earnshaw: Flexible working, last-minute wrapping and embedding ESG

A Sustainable Xmas with Caroline Langley: PT puppy, 1970s wrapping paper and greenwashing

A Sustainable Xmas with Bev Shah: Homemade decorations, food waste and measurable metrics

A Sustainable Christmas with Eilidh Duncan: Agile working, Disclosure Regulation and meat-free meals

A Sustainable Christmas with Jean-Jacques Barbéris: Baby news, China’s game changer and reduced travel

A Sustainable Christmas with Patrick Thomas: Staycations, veggie diet and panic buying