Lafarge Cement UK has scooped the annual Large Business European Eco-Management and Audit Scheme Award (EMAS) for its innovative water management solution, developed at its Cauldon Works in Staffordshire and rolled out across its network of sites.
Lafarge was praised at the Brussels event for showing excellence in respecting and safeguarding the environment by applying a pioneering water management system – Water Footprinting and water efficiency improvements – across six of its UK sites.
The company’s Water Footprinting scheme identifies where the greatest volume of water is used during the whole life cycle in the manufacture of cement at a specific site and implements new management methods and decisions. The initiative addresses water consumed at the Lafarge site itself as well as the entire supply chain and end user. The knowledge gained through the scheme has allowed choices to be made to reduce the water intensity of the cement including reduction of coal use with more sustainable waste fuels, which reduce both the embedded water and carbon content as well as making the process increasingly sustainable.
Dave Shenton, National Environment Manager, at Lafarge Cement UK, said: “The recognition from this award is testament to the dedication and hard work of our team who have overcome numerous challenges in reaching our water management and sustainability objectives.
“It is a significant milestone for Lafarge Cement UK – as well as the industry more broadly – and we will use this as the benchmark for further improvements to our operations as we strive for even greater reductions in the resources we use while still offering the best quality products and services.”
Martin Baxter, Executive Director for Policy at Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA), said: "Lafarge Cement UK has shown real leadership in improving its environmental performance. Winning the European EMAS award is recognition of its achievement in reducing its environmental footprint.”
About the EMAS...
Launched in 2005, the EMAS have been designed by the European Commission to reward the efforts of registered organisations which are striving to improve their environmental and financial performance while also showcasing their latest sustainability initiatives. Lafarge Cement has previously won this award in 2008 for its work on reducing carbon.
This year, each of the 27 entries from 14 European countries was judged by an expert panel chaired by executive director of the European Environment Agency, professor Jacqueline McGlade. A total of six European private sector organisations were recognised at the prestigious event including German brewery Neumarkter Lammsbrau Gebr and Austrian sewage works Abwasserverband Anzbach Laabental.