Why the environment matters to me

UNTHA Enviro Q&A external Flame UK

To celebrate all things sustainability, help share tips for smarter environmental thinking and remind each other just how much our carbon impact matters, we’re inviting friends of the business and our peers in the wider industry to take part in this quickfire environmental Q&A.

Next up, it’s Dan Pegram, Director at Flame UK

Let’s begin by learning a little more about Flame UK – where do you fit into the environmental sector?

We support some of the UK’s largest businesses to be more environmentally-focussed when dealing with their waste management. We help them cut carbon emissions, improve recycling, and achieve their environmental targets.

And what does your role at Flame UK involve?

I work with our project development team to deliver new and innovative projects to our partners.

What would you say is the biggest environmental threat currently facing your sector?

Personally, my concern is the use of mixed general waste for energy recovery. A well-run material recovery facility will separate recyclable waste, but we’re interested in the way some transfer stations are handling mixed general waste. Let’s not forget the valuable resource potential of certain rubbish, so sending it to landfill or to energy-from-waste plants with little – or no – sorting, is concerning.

Where have you seen impressive progress in the environmental sector in the past 12 months?

I think without fail the most impressive progress has been the desire from large corporate businesses – the ‘big waste’ producers – to do more. Many have switched their focus towards higher recycling rates, even driving out waste altogether in certain circumstances, and working with their whole supply chain.

Which ‘green’ innovation in your sector has the potential to create a real (even unexpected) impact?

The use of technology has the potential to create a huge impact – the environmental sector has many new systems available, but those who deliver results to end users will be the ones to focus on.

What does Flame UK plan to do differently, when it comes to sustainability, in the coming year?

Sustainability is a big subject in our business, and of course when we say ‘sustainability’ that often refers to waste – and  specifically handling that waste – in a more environmentally-friendly, or ‘green’ way. The focus is on the longevity and robustness of the solutions being implemented, which allow business to rely on them both now and in the future. That’s what sustainability means to them.

Complete the sentence – When it comes to the environment, the UK is great at recycling

…most of its waste. We have a lot of technology that can generate valuable resources from ‘rubbish’.

And where would you like to see the most environmental improvements over the next 12 months?

A focus on UK infrastructure for recycling more of the waste we create, here, rather than relying on the export market – that’s the key for me! Businesses and residential waste producers want it to be easier to recycle more.

What’s the best thing you’ve ever reused/upcycled?

Maybe not the ‘best’ thing, but for me it’s certainly the simplest – I reuse my garden waste. It’s so easy and the compost is great for the plants – everyone should have a composter at home.

Share 1 tip to help people be ‘greener’, at work or at home:

Of course I would always suggest composting your lawn cuttings, that’s a simple one, but the biggest way to become greener is to be more aware of your impact on the world. Just look at the effect you have when you travel to and from the office, for example, and via use of fossil fuels – even leaving lights on and turning the heating up too much. Become aware and then set yourself a target to reduce this – bit by bit you will be kinder to planet earth and your environmental footprint will become smaller and smaller.

 

 

 

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