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Meet the Team...

Published: Thur, 3 Nov 2016
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Caterine Savage
Catherine Savage
I am...
Catherine Savage - Senior Environmental Policy Officer at the Housing Executive

I have been working in…

…the Environmental Policy Unit since 2007 when it was established.  It recently merged with the Energy Conservation Unit to form the Sustainable Development Unit to continue with the promotion of a low carbon environment within a continually changing landscape.
The Sustainable Development Unit has a broad scope looking at new and emerging issues which link health to the environment.  This includes ‘Green Prescriptions’, sustainable development, climate change, biodiversity, food poverty, environmental benchmarking and waste management.  
A vital component of the unit’s work is networking with public, private and third sector organisations interested in the environment to create a more collaborative way of working. The Third Sector in particular has added an interesting dimension; good, credible links with stakeholders such as NI Environment Link, RSPB, ARENA Network and the NI Sustainable Development Forum have been long established.

The Sustainable Development Unit’s aim is…

…to ensure that concern for environmental conditions and best use of resources is part of our business strategy and as the Regional Housing Authority, to influence and promote practical and cost effective energy efficiency measures to deliver significant improvements to all householders across NI.

The key objectives for my role are…

...Maintaining an independently certified Environmental Management System;
•Getting everyone to recognise our environment is not an inexhaustible resource is vital and striking the balance between the responsible use, and protection of, natural resources is important; and
•Investigating new and evolving energy technologies; identifying new funding opportunities; developing new approaches to tackling fuel poverty and reducing CO² emissions.

The most satisfying part of my work…

…It is exciting to work in a constantly evolving sector. As a qualified Lead Environmental Auditor and Associate Member of the Institute of Environmental Management & Assessment (IEMA) it’s important for me to keep up to date with the emerging issues and trends. Representing the Housing Executive at conferences, seminars, workshops and collaborating with other organisations interested in the environment is important to me. It is satisfying to garner new ideas and bring fresh thinking into the unit which is vital to the nature of our work.