Energy News

Green 50: South West's most progressive green companies recognised

Share Article

Written by: The Business | Posted 30 November 2017 10:20

Green 50: South West's most progressive green companies recognised

Business leaders and sustainability innovators from across the South West gathered at Bristol and Bath Science Park last week to celebrate the region’s most progressive green companies.

The Green 50 Awards, which was sponsored by eco printing and mailing firm CFH Docmail and renewable energy supplier Good Energy, saw businesses acknowledged for driving forward change in organisational sustainability.

Gavin Thompson, editor of The Western Daily Press, hosted the ceremony.

He said: "There have been steps along the way already. When I put out our recycling every week I think ‘we used to throw all of this away to be buried in a hole in the ground’. But I also think, ‘look at all that plastic’. There is a long way to go.

"I do not believe this change will be brought about by direct action. Rather this will be driven by consumers. And business meeting those consumer demands, and, in some cases, leading it.

"That’s why we created the West of England Green 50. We want to nudge that transition along. We want to inspire change."

Waste management solutions company GENeco, which is based in Avonmouth, was presented with a judges’ award by Dave Broadway, chairman of CFH Docmail.

Read more: Business confidence in South West greater than UK average

Dave said: “We are fighting against climate change. We are the few and we have to do more and more to save the rest of them from themselves.”

Bristol-based ethical bank Triodos was also presented with a judges’ award by Dr Randall Bowen, director of business services at Good Energy, who pointed out that “if we don’t do something about climate change we are going to be in a very sticky situation.”

L-R: Dr Randall Bowen of Good Energy, and Zoe Sear and Ed Grattan of Triodos Bank

Zoe Sear, head of marketing and communications at Triodos Bank UK, said: “We were delighted to be recognised for outstanding achievement as part of the Green 50 Awards.

“It has been a big year for us at Triodos Bank. We launched a personal current account and have been inspired by the response. We are so proud to be part of a community that is striving to create a better and more sustainable world.”

Bristol-based Real Wrap Co scooped the People’s Choice Award, which was voted for by members of the public, for its outstanding contribution to environmentalism.

The company produces around 100,000 products per week but has almost zero food waste going to landfill. The business has achieved its sustainability goals by finding innovative ways to address the issues they face.

Directors Jason Howell and Phillippe Gill, together with charity Toast Ale, devised a solution to prevent bread waste – by turning it into beer.

They teamed up with Bristol’s King Street Brewhouse to combine waste bread with malted barley, oat husks, hops, yeast and water that is transformed into ale – a process that takes several weeks.

Read more: Opinion: South West companies should be embracing artificial intelligence

“Personally we hate to see the amount of bread that gets thrown out each day” said Jason. “So we were delighted when Toast Ale approached us. It’s such a brilliant and simple way of reducing waste.”

After researching other ways they could reduce their carbon footprint, the company now sends all its remaining food waste to anaerobic digestion chambers where it is converted to gas and electricity and fed into the local energy grid.

The by-products of this process are used as fertiliser, meaning the company is now extremely close to their ambition of zero food waste.

L-R: Gavin Thompson, editor of Western Daily Press, and the founders of The Real Wrap Co

Jason said: “As a major food producer we take our environmental responsibilities very seriously. Food waste is a huge environmental issue. We are always looking for new ways to tackle it – and we want to show that recycling doesn’t have to be boring!”

Tom Beasley, head of Bristol and Bath Science Park, added: “The Science Park was delighted to host the West of England Green 50, with increasing pressures on the environment it’s great to support businesses of all types that are embracing science and technology as a solution to the challenges of climate change, waste and reducing our impact on the environment.

"The West of England Green 50 are an inspiration to us all and demonstrates what can be achieved.”

Share Article