Fund Helping Local Industry to Go 'Green' ENVIRONMENT
EIGHT manufacturers are well on the way to improving efficiency and making savings by going green with the Birmingham Centre for Manufacturing.
The companies are all participating on the SMEs & The Environment programme, an initiative led by Birmingham City Council and part funded through the European Regional Development Fund to help local businesses profit from improved environmental management.
The programme is being delivered at the BCM by Groundwork, and will address issues such as waste minimisation, resource efficiency, and formal aspects of Environmental Management Systems, commented Peter Mann, Environmental Network Co-ordinator.
'The delegates represent a diverse range of manufacturers, and all have been very enthusiastic about the programme.
They want to work towards formal recognition of improved environmental management, culminating in either ISO 14001 or QS-9000'.
Tulgrove Ltd is an established wire forming and presswork company, and Stephen Jones, Managing Director of Tulgrove, is a delegate on the course.
He explains that manufacturers - particularly in the automotive sector - are increasingly under pressure from their larger customers to have ISO 14001 accreditation.
'We hope to improve our environment, our impact on the environment and to make savings, but also we need to demonstrate our commitment to environmental management to our customers,'
The course runs for a year and combines a series of workshops with individual site visits.
The current programme will finish in November 2000, but according to Peter Mann, additional manufacturers can start on the scheme - either as individual participants, or where a number of companies have expressed an interest, as part of a group.
'There is an increasing awareness of the need for compliance with new legislation relating to pollution control and packaging waste for example, as well as a motivation to improve the bottom time,' he explained.
'It is crucial that manufacturing companies are prepared for likely future legislation relating to businesses and the environment.'
A series of FREE seminars is being held at the BCM to highlight the programme, so why not come along and find out how environmental management can benefit your business?
Contact Peter Mann at the BCM for details. Tel: 0121 687 9039.
Fax: 0121 687 9009. E.mail: PeterM@bham-bcm.co.uk For further information about available support, visit the Birmingham Business Environmental Network (BBEN) website at bben.org.uk
Supermarket leads the way
SAVE IT: Most of the packaging used today in recyclable
EVERYONE knows that recycling is a good way to help the environment.
People in Birmingham probably recycle millions of tonnes of paper, glass, plastic, cardboard, steel and aluminium cans each year.
As a result they save raw materials, reduce energy demand and avoid waste. But even so we are just not recycling enough.
Estimates suggest that only about six per cent of household waste is recycled but the government has set targets for the UK to recycle 25-40 per cent of packaging waste by 2001. So there's a long way to go.
Sainsbury's plays its part in helping customers recycle by providing banks in its car parks and hosting the Alcan recycling vans at some of its Birmingham stores.
The Alcan mobile recycling centre began visiting Sainsbury's supermarkets in the Birmingham area in 1990. In Birmingham there are 80 million aluminium cans available per year.
If recycled they would earn collectors pounds 600,000.
Many Sainsbury's stores in the Birmingham area also have red recycling bins for aluminium cans.
Money from the sales of these cans go to raise funds for the Children's Hospital Appeal. Another way people can support recycling is to buy products made out of recycled material.
By doing this they create demand for more recycled products and ensure that materials are reused and not dumped in a landfill.
Now there's an easy way to buy recycled products.
Just look for the Buy Recycled logo. Sainsbury's is a keen supporter of the Buy Recycled campaign which was launched in 1999.
The logo now appears on all its Revive range of recycled products, which include writing paper, envelopes, note pads, bin liners and rubbish sacks. All products in the Revive range contain between 60 - 100 per cent of recycled material. Sainsbury's is reducing its own store waste too.
As well as recycling instore plastic and cardboard packaging Sainsbury's is also making sure that food does not go to waste.
It has been donating food which is about to pass its display date but still within its use-by date to homeless people fed at hostels supported by the charity Crisis Fareshare.
The scheme began live in London but has been expanded to other UK cities including Birmingham where it has been running for the last year taking food from half a dozen Sainsbury's stores.
Planning helps city stay on target
BIRMINGHAM City Council handles over half a million tonnes of waste each year and the amount grows each year. About eighty per cent of this is produced by people who live in Birmingham.
Nearly 300,000 tonnes of waste is collected from the four hundred thousand households which receive weekly refuse collection service.
The public make about three million visits a year to the five Public Waste Disposal Sites delivering about 80,000 tonnes of waste a year.
Usually, each year, about 35,000 tonnes of litter is collected from the 2,000 kilometres (1,200 miles) of streets and roads and from abut three thousand litter bins.
Each year a growing amount of waste is recycled with over 25,000 tonnes of glass, paper, cardboard, drinks cans, metals, textiles, waste oil and vehicle batteries collected last year from over three hundred and eighty sites located throughout the city.
The other, roughly, 100,000 tonnes, making up the half million, comes from industrial and commercial waste collections.
Some of this waste collections. Some of this waste arises through contacts with the city markets, some through the airport, with the majority arising from local shopping centres and corner shops.
All sorts of wastes are collected by the Direct Services Organisation (DSO) disposal of these wastes is dependent, however, on what makes up the waste.
Some will be combustible and be taken to the Energy from Waste Plant at Tyseley where electrical energy is recovered.
Waste no time on recycling
SOLIHULL Metropolitan Borough Council has long had a policy of protecting the environment in all aspects of its operations.
For example, the environmental services department has been involved in recycling since the first bottle banks were introduced in the early 1980s.
Indeed, the council has now recycled more than 1,600 tonnes of glass and facilities are available to recycle paper, textiles, aluminium cans, scrap metal, used engine oil and scrap car batteries. There are 36 recycling centres throughout the borough.
Solihull Council is also a major shareholder in the Coventry and Solihull Waste to Energy Plant and more than 55 per cent of collected household and commercial waste is recycled to produce electricity for the National Grid.
Heat energy is also used for the nearby Peugeot factory.
Waste is disposed of at the SITA Packington landfill site, with energy generation. Methane gas is collected and used to generate electricity for the National Grid.
The council's government-approved Recycling Strategy Plan was reviewed in 1998 and has been the subject of wide consultation. The strategy will influence future waste recycling activity.
Two successful home compost bin promotions took place in May 1999 and during the current month.
In excess of 6,000 bins have been sold to Solihull residents and it is estimated that more than 1,000 tonnes of household waste has subsequently been recycled.
Evaluation of central composting for waste delivered to the Bickenhill public waste site has been carried out, together with an innovative chewing gum removal and street-scrubbing scheme.
Standards of cleanliness contributed significantly to Solihull's success in the Britain in Bloom 1999 regional and national competitions.
The council's highways department has carried out carriageway recycling and resurfacing schemes and there is a borough-wide programme to upgrade and replace street lights.
The transport department has vehicles which run on low sulphur fuel and all metal waste from the vehicle maintenance operation is recycled.
The council participates in the component exchange scheme and is also evaluating the use of natural gas vehicles.
Equally active is the landscaping department, with a new park being constructed in Marston Green.
The borough, which won the regional and national Britain in Bloom competition last year, has extensive spring bedding and bulb displays. It also has involvement in a number of local area improvement schemes.…
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Publication information: Article title: Fund Helping Local Industry to Go 'Green' ENVIRONMENT. Contributors: Not available. Newspaper title: Birmingham Evening Mail (England). Publication date: March 28, 2000. Page number: 52. © 2005 Birmingham Post & Mail Ltd. COPYRIGHT 2000 Gale Group.