World Environment Day 2018< Back to Blog
Beginning in 1974, the campaign is now widely celebrated in over 100 countries. Taking up one of the greatest environmental challenges of our time, this year’s theme (which is being hosted by India) is ‘Beat Plastic Pollution’.
While plastic has many valuable uses for modern life, the scale of the single-use plastic problem (and its environmental consequences) is huge:
- Around the world, 1 million plastic drinking bottles are purchased every minute.
- Every year we use up to 5 trillion disposable plastic bags.
- In total, 50 per cent of the plastic we use is single use.
- Nearly one third of the plastic packaging we use escapes collection systems.
- Every year, up to 13 million tons of plastic leak into our oceans, where it can persist for up to 1,000 years before it fully disintegrates.
With the campaign calling upon everyone to do their bit to take care of the Earth, we thought it was a good time to take a look at Sheriff’s own environmental commitments.
Managing Director, Ekrem Mahmutaj, commented:
“Working in the construction sector, we fully recognise that our activities can impact on the environment in terms of the use of raw materials, emissions and waste and so we have policies in place which seek to minimise this impact. We regularly examine our working practices and work closely with clients and suppliers to come up with options that avoid pollution or waste; one example being the hot melt roofing system we install, which was the first in the UK to offer zero wrapper waste.”
Sheriff’s environmental policy also sets out a series of pledges that the company will:
- Assess the environmental effects of the company’s activities including sites.
- Make efficient use of natural resources by conserving energy and water, minimising waste, and recycling where possible.
- Meet its duty of care in relation to waste management by ensuring the safe keeping, transportation and recovery or disposal of waste.
- Use recycled construction materials whenever these can be commercially justified.
- Do our best to ensure the products we use have been made with constituent materials that have been responsibly sourced.
- Keep transport use to a minimum and regularly service vehicles to maintain their efficiency.
- Work with suppliers to ensure they recognise and reduce the environmental impact of their products and transportation.
- Work with suppliers and contractors to promote the sustainable construction agenda.
- Establish systems for the prevention of pollution at sites – to water, land or air.
- Keep sites clean and tidy to ensure minimum disturbance to clients and neighbours.
- Minimise noise pollution created by our operations.
- Liaise with the local community to minimise disruption to the local environment.
- Encourage employees to feedback to management about the company’s environmental performance.
Coming back to the plastic-busting theme, today we’re asking everyone at Sheriff to look at their daily practices (working and personal) and consider whether there are any changes they could make to help reduce the burden of plastic pollution on our environment.
To get you started, here’s one thing we can all do when offered something involving single-use plastic (e.g. in a shop):
If you can re-use or recycle it, go ahead and take it.
If you can’t do either of these, refuse it!
Let us know your ideas.