The appetite for positive change in the environment and sustainable solutions has never been higher. The impact of climate change could be irreversible by 2030, and 20 of the warmest years on record have been within the last 22 years. Change is much needed, and with the UK Government placing a heavy focus on sustainability, businesses need to switch up the gears.
At Spill Defence, sustainability is our core value and working in spill containment doesn’t mean we can’t do our bit. With heavy targets in place for businesses to reduce their carbon footprint, companies need to look to every corner of their operations to identify ways to contribute.
Every business is different, and spills from oil, chemicals or water can be problematic for employee wellbeing and corporate compliance. The risks for companies are high. Of equal risk to a business are accidents, legal action and dangerous substances entering the environment, all of which can come at a high cost.
Companies that are caught breaking environmental laws through acts such as polluting rivers, violating the conditions of their permits or any other activity that could harm the environment are subject to heavy fines and required to show they have taken steps to avoid the offences happening again in the future. A major UK construction firm received a hefty fine of £180,000 in 2018 for an oil spill at a hospital development in Dorset. The spillage polluted groundwater and the Environment Agency brought a case, and following a lengthy investigation, negligence in controlling the spill was uncovered.
Not only does pollution from factories, power plants and other industrial buildings damage the health of the planet that we live on, but it also has the potential to damage health and wildlife.
Where sustainability and spill control meet
As with managing other risks in the business, spill control requires planning and action. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) report that slips and trips are the cause of over a third of all reported minor injuries, 20% of over 3-day injuries and two fatalities per year in the UK. The critical question is how can this be handled with sustainable business practices in mind? The innovation of closed-loop recycling can transform old products into new ones – safely and with a high-quality output.
How does closed-loop recycling work?
We source materials from other manufacturers and recycle them to create environmentally friendly spill response solutions. Furthermore, all our suppliers are passionate about the environment and approved by FSC standards. Let’s explore some of the materials we might use and what for:
- Woodfibre – We are recycling sawdust from sawmills to create a loose absorbent for oil and water-based spills. Sawdust is our primary source of material for creating sustainable products, and we recycle a whopping 75,000 tons every month.
- Cellulose – Cellulose is taken from wipe manufacturers and used to re-create general maintenance absorbents. We currently repurpose around 12,000 kilograms every month in our closed-recycling process.
- Polypropylene – We take plastic-based materials with phobic properties from wipe and nappy manufacturers to create absorbents for chemical spills. Each month we transform around 9,000 kilograms of polypropylene per month.
Closed-loop recycling goes beyond reusing resources and protecting the environment. It also enables high-quality material to remain in circulation and ensures demand for the supply of this material, contributing positively to the economy.
This approach is more favourable than ‘downcycling’, a process whereby materials are recycled to create new products, but at a much lower quality meaning the item cannot be recycled again.
Can you afford not to?
The argument for being sustainable as a business facing the risk of a spill is still strong. Our closed-loop recycled solutions can enhance existing sustainability practices and come with several benefits. Taking sustainability seriously can strengthen your business reputation and support you with making new business connections, attracting the best talent, and satisfying investors and stakeholders. Your employees (and marketing department!) will have something to be proud of, knowing the business is committed to positively impacting the environment. Our sustainable products are also efficient and of the highest quality; this can reduce risk, product usage rates and ensure you receive the best results.
Sustainable spill containment solutions for business
Environmentally friendly spill response should not be seen as a quick fix for any business. Our sustainable spill control solutions are designed to be highly effective and top quality while remaining affordable. Our customers find it straightforward to replace their existing systems with an environmentally friendly spill management system.
There’s never been a better time to integrate sustainable practices into your daily operations. We make it easy to incorporate sustainability into your spill management system. Find out more about environmentally friendly spill response products, spill response kits and eco-friendly absorbents by getting in touch with the team today.