My Why – Why I am an Environmental Consultant

My Why I'm reading a lot of business books at the moment - strategy, marketing, sales & psychology. The latest is putting the WHY into our business…. in developing our strategy, we should Start with Why. For me it's about improving the environment.   I was mesmerised by the wonderful David Attenborough when I was a kid. I knew it was my calling - to improve the environment ... & to make a living out of it!   - Diverse ecosystems - beautiful places to visit & of course to live. - Healthy air, healthy people. - Fabulous plants & creatures. - You don't have to travel far & wide to see beautiful things. The world is an amazing place & we all have to look after it.   My consultancy Eshcon puts the environment at the core of business. Indeed it is my mission to make environmental management the business norm.   I didn’t want to change the world by being an environmental campaigner. I wanted to do it in more pragmatic...
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Increases in ISO 14001 numbers

Increases in ISO 14001 numbers Each year the International Standards Organisation releases the results their research on take-up of ISO standards across the world. This year follows past upwards trends.   As usual the Quality standard ISO 9001 dominates the scene with over 1 million certificates in 2016 (current certificates, not just issued that year) - 1,106,356 up by 7%.   ISO 14001, the standard for environmental management, is the second most widely used with 346,189 certificates worldwide. This saw an 8% increase over the last year.   China has the most ISO 14001 certificates by far with 137,230, with Japan & Italy following with 27,372 and 26,655 respectively. This year the United Kingdom is down slightly (6%) & slipped one place in the league table to fourth, with 16,761 certificates.   It could be that this slight decrease is due to companies not knowing how to implement the latest version of the standard, ISO 14001:2015. Talking to certification bodies, they’ve told me that companies are worried about how...
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5 Top Tips on Writing an Environmental Policy

5 Top Tips on Writing an Environmental Policy Your Environmental Policy is a written statement, signed by senior management, which outlines your organisation’s commitment to managing its environmental impacts.   Unlike H&S policies, there is no legal requirement for organisations to have an adopted environmental policy. However, it is essential if you want to implement an ISO 14001 EMS. It's also vital if you work with large organisations who often ask for EMS certification and info on your environmental improvements.   There is no standard content for an environmental policy, although they often contain the same themes; plus there are specific requirements within ISO 14001.   Top Tips -1-      The policy is meant for everyone to see, so make sure it's easy to read and understand - not too dry or filled with jargon. -2-      Make it realistic, achievable and relevant to your activities and practices. Readers should be able to understand what your main impacts are and how you are committed to managing them. -3-      It...
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Roffey Park’s ISO 14001 Success

Roffey Park’s ISO 14001 Success I am pleased to say that another of my clients has successfully recertified to ISO 14001 - Roffey Park Institute is an internationally renowned leadership institute based near Horsham, operating across the UK and in Singapore.   The Environmental Management Systems (EMS) is used to manage impacts, reduce risk, identify opportunities for cost savings and address customers’ needs.   Key achievements include paper usage down by 22% this past year, electricity by 16% and oil consumption has fallen dramatically since the installation of a ground source heat pump. The extensive grounds are well managed and the kitchen garden even grows fruit and veg for the restaurant (see picture above).   The new ISO 14001 standard has extra requirements, including a strong focus on leadership and alignment to the business strategy. Eshcon guided Roffey Park through the transition process starting with an ISO 14001 Gap Analysis, improving the EMS documentation, conducting the internal audits & attending the certification. With a change of staff...
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EMS – Going a bit further…

EMS - Going a bit further… What I like about networking is meeting new businesses & chatting about them, their activities, challenges & opportunities. We talk about the work I do & I often hear about their own environmental activities. It’s pleasing to hear how companies are recycling their waste or using low energy lighting.   They are beginning to see the benefits that putting the environment into the business generates. But they realise they’re not as successful as they could be. Energy prices are still spiralling. Legal issues keep cropping up. Customers want more & more information. Staff don’t seem to be engaged.   What they haven’t realised is that putting in an Environmental Management System can help address these problems. It gives the structure to manage impacts, find efficiencies & savings, get staff involved & communicate with their stakeholders.   Seeing as most companies get started on the environment because their customers demand it, it makes sense to put in an Environmental Management System &...
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What are The Global Goals?

The SDGs: what are they & why should we care? Hopefully you should be becoming aware of The Global Goals - the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals - but what are they & why should we care? Myles Wickstead CBE is an expert on international development, a Visiting Professor at King’s College London, was British Ambassador to Ethiopia and was Head of Secretariat to the Commission for Africa. Myles wrote a great article a year ago on the SDGs. Here it is in full and I'll summarise a few of his key points below to give you an introduction. At a UN Summit in late September 2015, Governments signed up to a document called: ‘Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’. It contains a set of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), supported by 169 targets and many more indicators. The 17 SDGs are shown in this diagram. If all these goals and targets are too much to remember, think 'P'. The key elements...
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ESOS – The Challenges Last Time

ESOS – The Challenges Last Time I am Lead ESOS Assessor and was very busy during the first round of ESOS (the Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme legislation). Some of my clients started nice & early, but many came to me very late so I had to work extra hard to get everything done for them in time. Indeed, many companies only started to look at ESOS a couple of months before the deadline, so there was a huge rush and a lot of frayed nerves. Apart from the lack of assessors & short timescales, I noticed trends from ESOS Phase 1. I’m sharing these now, so that hopefully Phase 2 can run more smoothly for you. These are the sorts of challenges I saw: Company structure – this could be a problem, particularly for large groups with complicated ownership structures. Find all the companies in a group, the company registration numbers, all the sites, who is the Board member to sign off. Missed companies – although...
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GDB Source Sept 17

Source Chairman’s Column My regular column in The Source Magazine, for GDB Gatwick Diamond Business.     As an environmental management consultant, I help companies become more efficient, reduce risk & win new business. Which sounds rather familiar - just like gdb, we are all about Supporting - Growing - Engaging. I can’t believe I’m already one year into my tenure as gdb Chairman. As I reported to the AGM, it’s been a rollercoaster of year for me - all about strategy, budgets, promoting gdb & leadership. gdb is evolving & you’ll see the changes: We have a new & expanding team, taking on new roles and working practices, tracking progress & celebrating success. Our new Ambassadors help to promote gdb and welcome the ‘newbies & pinkies’. A referral scheme helps to make use of the ‘Good People Who Know Good People’. We’ve seen growth - membership is up 17%, we ran 80+ events with 4,000 attendees & continue to make the connections. We are the voice of the...
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Sept 17 Newsletter – ESOS & How to Win Awards

Sept 17 Newsletter - ESOS & Tips on How to Win Awards Eshcon regularly sends out an e-newsletter to contacts – here’s the latest from September 2017.   ESOS Phase 2 ESOS (Energy Saving Opportunities Scheme) is in Phase 2 & companies are advised to get going on the work soon, to avoid the rushes experienced at the last deadline. Energy audits can be done from now onwards, to help identify opportunities to save energy & money. As a Lead ESOS Assessor I can help you with your energy assessments & ISO 50001. A New Look for ESHCon Over summer I've been busy redesigning my brand. I have a new look website & logo. These all revolve around my mission to make environmental management the business norm. Check it out. Student Mentor Scheme I am a Student Mentor on the programme run by the University of Sussex. This is how it benefits both the student & myself. Tips on How to Win Awards As a judge of national & regional business...
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Student Mentoring

Student-Business Mentoring Scheme It's been a while since I left university & went into the world of business. I have over 20 years of experience in the environmental management sector. I enjoy what I do & get satisfaction from helping my clients improve. And it occurred to me that I had experience that I could share with others, perhaps younger people starting out on their career. So when the Head of the School of Business, Management and Economics at the University of Sussex asked me to become a Student Mentor, I thought that would be a great opportunity.   Sussex runs a program linking local business people with their students. The idea is to share experience, the things we've learned along the way. This is particularly good for me, returning to my old Uni.   I was linked with a young woman studying economics. At our first meeting we completed the Mentoring Wheel diagram. On each spoke of the wheel, an issue or area that was important...
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What does my logo mean?

What does my logo mean?

What does my logo mean? This last month I've been working on my business not just in my business. I've redesigned my website (it's looking nice and fresh now). I've been thinking about marketing strategy. And I've even revisited my logo. As you know I am an environmental management consultant. I work with businesses to manage their impacts, reduce risk, save money and find commercial benefits.   Indeed, my mission is to make environmental management the business norm. I often talk about putting the environment into the heart of the business. I don't want it to be an add-on. It should be part of core business operations. That's how you get the true benefits.   I have redesigned my logo recently. It hasn't changed much, except the colouring & accents.   You'll notice the green 'o' - this represents the green world, within the core of the business.   That's what Eshcon is all about. Making environmental management straight forward for you to put it into your business so you...
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ESOS Phase 2

Getting Started on ESOS Phase 2 Are you getting on with ESOS? We are now in the Phase 2 compliance period and, although the deadline of 5th December 2019 may seem a long way off, you should now be thinking about the compliance process.   ESOS (the Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme) is a mandatory energy assessment scheme for large organisations in the UK. ESOS requires you to Measure your total energy consumption Conduct audits to identify cost-effective energy efficiency opportunities Report compliance to the Environment Agency.   The Agency is urging organisations to act early to help avoid disruption & enforcement action, also to unlock the financial savings brought by greater energy efficiency.   You may choose to conduct energy audits of your sites or choose an alternative route, such as an ISO 50001 Energy Management System.   Start gathering your data now - you’ll need to show energy consumption for a 12 month period covering 31st December 2018.   I am a Lead ESOS assessor, which need to be involved...
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GDB Source June 17

Source Chairman’s Column My regular column in The Source Magazine, for GDB Gatwick Diamond Business.   What are the most important things a company can have? Most would say profits; perhaps a good reputation; engaged and motivated staff. You can't buy reputation. You don’t just magically get motivated staff. And you can't improve your profits without either of these. As an environmental management consultant, I’ve been running workshops getting clients ready for new standards, like ISO 14001. I get staff together from across the company and all levels, to look at business risks and opportunities. This helps them become more efficient, plan for the future and raise their profile with customers. The important element here is staff engagement. Everyone has something to contribute. Staff want to be part of the organisation, to be truly involved and feel proud of the company. Staff motivation can also be helped through team building. Take, for example, the GDB Charity Challenge. I had a great afternoon at the challenge, alas not...
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Case Study – ISO 14001:2015 Readiness Assessment – University of Reading

Case Study - ISO 14001:2015 Readiness Assessment University of Reading The University of Reading, ranked in the top 1% in the world, is situated mainly on two campuses: London Road and the main Whiteknights campus which occupies 130 hectares with approximately 200 buildings. The University has approximately 18,000 students and nearly 4,000 members of staff.   Eshcon conducted a Readiness Assessment of the University’s Environmental Management System to help prepare for the certification audit to achieve ISO 14001:2015.   The University has had an Environmental Management System (EMS) in place for a number of years, certified to ISO 14001:2004, and also holds EcoCampus platinum status. There is strong commitment to the EMS, with involvement across the organisation and at all levels.   A lot of work had been done by the Sustainability Team to transition the EMS to the requirements of the new standard. The team wanted reassurance that everything was on track for the upcoming certification audit.   Eshcon conducted a Readiness Assessment with the requirements of the...
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AQUAPAX

AQUAPAX - Pure, Fresh, Natural Mineral Water (in paper cartons) After first meeting several years ago, I recently bumped into Neil Tomlinson, founder of AQUAPAX, at a business event. He was guest speaker, sharing his story of his career, business & product.   With all the talk recently about plastics ending up in our oceans and the issue of single-use plastics, it’s great to hear of a product with alternative packaging.   Building on his career with 30,000+ hours water sector experience, Neil sources AQUAPAX natural mineral water from beneath a protected nature reserve in Germany.   Why that site location for a brand with the strapline 'a pure thirst for the environment'? "Well it's the same distance as the Highlands, yet we've been able to locate a filling plant with a perfect water source, which runs on biogas, and we're then carbon balancing all our energy use in addition to ‘gifting’ 1% of our entire sales turnover for environmental restoration" says Neil.   The most important aspect...
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Case Study – GHG Reporting – Hogg Robinson

Case Study - Mandatory GHG Reporting Hogg Robinson Group Hogg Robinson Group is a global corporate services provider, specialising in travel, expense, payments and data management underpinned by proprietary technology.   Hogg Robinson Group is listed on the London Stock Exchange and comes under the mandatory GHG reporting requirements of the Companies Act 2006.   Eshcon carries out annual calculations of Hogg Robinson Group’s Scope 1 & 2 GHG emissions for all its sites, to be included in the company’s Annual Report.   Hogg Robinson Group has offices in 88 cities in 24 countries around the world. Collecting this data can be a significant task. Eshcon and the Hogg Robinson Group finance team work together to collect the data from each site (or ‘entity’), ensuring that it is all returned on time, complete and accurate.   A selection of sites is chosen for deeper analysis and validation of the data.   Scope 1 & 2 greenhouse gas GHG emissions are calculated arising from energy in the buildings (gas, electricity etc),...
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Case Study – ISO 14001:2015 Transition – Roband Electronics

Case Study - ISO 14001:2015 Transition Roband Electronics Based in Charlwood near Gatwick Airport, Roband Electronics is an independent British company specialising in the design, development, manufacture and support of electronic power supplies. In 2016, Roband celebrated its 60th anniversary.   Eshcon helped Roband achieve ISO 14001:2015 certification, with a Gap Analysis of its EMS and then updating the system to transition to the new standard.   Roband has a history of good environmental practice and decided to formalise this into an Environmental Management System (EMS). ESHCon has worked with Roband for a number of years, initially to develop & implement the EMS and their first certification to ISO 14001.   As the EMS has progressed, Eshcon has lead internal audits, attended certification audits and provided support to the environment team, where knowledge or experience needed a boost.   In 2016 Roband decided to transition the EMS to ISO 14001:2015 in time for the scheduled recertification audit.   Work started with a Gap Analysis to identify where the EMS needed to...
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Case Study – Training – Mid Sussex Council

Case Study - Training Mid Sussex District Council Mid Sussex District Council serves a population of around 125,000 over an area of 128 square miles of West Sussex. Council services include Planning, Refuse and Leisure.   Eshcon delivered environmental awareness training to the newly established Environmental Challenge Officers (ECOs).   During the implementation of its EMS, MSDC established the ECO Network to engage and inform staff. One ECO from each department was appointed. ECOs needed a good understanding of environmental issues to give them the confidence to conduct their duties.   Eshcon helped in this by delivering the CIEH Level 2 Environmental Principles & Best Practice training course. Delegates were able to obtain CIEH qualifications on successful completion of assessment.   Running in-house training sessions allowed the course to be tailored to the audience, covering issues and activities specific to the Council, thus making it more relevant to the delegates and the organisation.   The benefits of this included: The ECOs gained a good understanding of environmental issues. It gave...
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Case Study – ESOS – Nellsar

Case Study - ESOS Nellsar Nellsar is one the South East’s leading providers of specialist Dementia, Nursing and Residential Care services for the elderly. Established in 1988, it owns and manages care facilities around the South Home Counties, offering high quality accommodation for up to 700 residents.   Nellsar comes under the Energy Saving Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) Regulations, which require businesses to carry out comprehensive audits of all their energy usage, including transport, and report to the regulator on a four-year cycle.   As a registered Lead ESOS Assessor, Eshcon supported Nellsar through its full ESOS Assessment.   The first stage was to measure energy consumption for the 13 sites - electricity, gas & LPG data was provided by Nellsar’s energy brokers UK Healthcare. This allowed an understanding of how energy was consumed at the sites, which varied in size, age & construction.   ESOS Energy Audits were then conducted at a selection of sites to further identify energy usages, patterns, plant & equipment, operations, trends & anomalies.   These highlighted...
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Case Study – Carbon Trust Standard – Go-Ahead Group

Case Study - Carbon Trust Standard Go-Ahead Group The Go-Ahead Group is one of the UK's leading providers of passenger transport services, comprising of 11 bus companies and 5 rail franchises. It employs around 23,000 people across the country, with over one billion passenger journeys taken each year.   Eshcon helped the Go-Ahead Group achieve the Carbon Trust Standard.   Go-Ahead first certified to the Carbon Trust Standard (CTS) in 2010, to help with positioning on the Carbon Reduction Commitment CRC league table and to raise its profile of good carbon management.   Because of the size of the group, number of companies involved and the complexity of the data, Go-Ahead opted for an Assisted Certification of the CTS. ESHCon provided additional support in preparing the submission, as well as conducting the assessment.   Eshcon worked with the Group’s Environment and Energy Manager to take Go-Ahead smoothly through the certification process. This involved: Gathering the required data, reviewing for completeness & accuracy, and ensuring sufficient carbon reductions were...
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