UK organisations scoop EMAS awards

4th December 2012


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Lafarge Cement and Bristol City Council are celebrating after winning European Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS) awards for their water efficiency efforts

Twenty-seven organisations from 14 European countries were nominated for the eighth annual awards, which recognise the efforts of EMAS registered organisations to lower their environmental impacts.

This year the awards were focused on rewarding excellence in respecting and safeguarding water resources and the judges selected just six winners.

Lafarge, the UK's largest cement manufacturer, was presented with the award for best large, private-sector organisation after improving the water efficiency of its cement-making process.

The company cut the amount of water it uses to produce portland cement equivalent by close to 90% in 2011, using just 0.142m3 per tonne compared with 1.22m3 in 2010.

Meanwhile, Bristol City Council won the equivalent public sector award for reducing water consumption across the city by 11% since 2009/10.

Measures taken by the council to cut water use include promoting water efficiency and introducing rainwater-harvesting schemes.

Environment commissioner Janez Potočnik praised the winners saying there results were impressive. “Water is a precious resource, and it needs better care. With these awards the European Commission recognises outstanding environmental performance in this field,” he said.

Martin Baxter, executive director of policy at IEMA, passed on the Institute’s congratulations. “The EMAS award winners have shown real leadership in improving their environmental performance. Winning a European EMAS award provides recognition of their achievement in reducing environmental footprints and reporting in a transparent way,” he said.

Other winners this year included a German brewery which uses recycled water and harvested rainwater, and has worked to educate its employees about responsible water use, and an a council in Tuscany that requires water-saving technologies to be installed in all new buildings.


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