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  • Writer's pictureMary Anne Jones

Our planet, our responsibility

Playing our part

BCAS has long been proactive in our approach towards our environmental responsibilities. However, we are now finding ourselves being asked on an increasingly frequent basis, to articulate and demonstrate the measures we take to reduce our impact on the environment. We thought therefore that all of our clients and suppliers might be interested to hear the contribution BCAS is making to the battle against climate change. We hope this communication will offer reassurance of our commitment but might also help others to add to their own efforts. We also invite input on what more we can do ourselves. Firstly, current environmental regulations, laws and codes of practice are regarded as setting the minimum standards of environmental performance. While we are a small company and there is therefore a limit to the measures we can take, there is considerably more we can do than meet our legal requirements.

Culture In particular, at BCAS, we view the role of company culture as being hugely significant in the effectiveness of an environmental and sustainability programme. This is why we encourage all team members to have an input into the policy and its execution. We are not simply asking employees to comply, we are asking them to help shape the company’s approach, to drive it forward and to take credit for its success. In order to set this mindset, we start the process at the point of induction and carry it on through as each employee develops into their role:

  • All BCAS staff are trained in our environmental management policy and given guidance on its implementation as new starters.

  • Measures have been implemented to help employees to use ‘green’ transport, for example, providing facilities for cyclists, encouraging car sharing and encouraging the use of public transport by providing information on local routes. These are communicated to team members prior to them joining the company and during the induction process.

  • In the office environment, paper is used sensibly, with measures to re-use and recycle wastepaper and the increased use of electronic communication to reduce the need for paper use

  • We have implemented a job management system that has allowed us to work more digitally and move away from paper-based solutions. This system also enables us to ensure the maximum fuel efficiency of our job allocation by location. These benefits are communicated to all employees during training, to enable them to use the system to its maximum capacity.

  • We run an internal initiative to reduce the amount of energy used within the business. This involves soliciting energy-reduction suggestions from the whole team and has led to significant changes and savings. For example: replacing existing lighting with LED bulbs and changing behaviour regarding the use of air conditioning, heating and lighting.

Other initiatives and practices that we have implemented include:

  • Packaging from goods received is re-used or recycled wherever possible. Wooden pallets are given to a local community group for repurposing.

  • We endeavour to reduce or eliminate the use of ozone depleting chemicals (CFC, Halon, 1.1.1 Trichloroethane, HCFC), tropical hardwood from forests which have not been independently certified as sustainable, pesticides on the UK. red list or the EU black list, and peat for soil amelioration purposes.

  • BCAS ensures that no polluting matter enters surface waters or groundwater. We operate an auditable, responsible programme for the safe disposal of oil and waste, and we hold a waste carrier’s licence issued by the Environment Agency.

  • Any services used for the storage or disposal of waste are checked to ensure that appropriate licences are held.

  • We aim to replace all of our engineering fleet with electric vehicles when improvements in range are consistent and cost-effective and as and when replacements are required.

Collaboration However, we do appreciate that it is not enough to simply look at what we can do internally to reduce our environmental impact. We also work closely with clients and suppliers to identify and create opportunities for improvement. Some of the measures we take to foster combined sustainability efforts include:

  • Where possible, we use suppliers who are willing to take away packaging for re-use or recycling and we consider the environmental impact of any purchases. We seek to use and buy the most energy-efficient products available to us, within reasonable budgetary restraints.

  • We endeavour to use sub-contractors and suppliers who comply with the requirements of our Environmental and Sustainability policy and help them to comply with environmental laws and regulations as much as possible.

  • We continuously communicate and promote a range of products, services and measures that our clients can use to reduce the energy consumption of their compressed air and vacuum systems. Energy efficiency is our priority message and is a theme that runs through our entire proposition.

  • We advise all clients of their obligation to comply with the Water Resources Act 1991 and encourage the use of oil/water separators where applicable.

Our local environment In addition to our overall strategic approach, BCAS also undertakes a series of practical measures to help protect and sustain the environment of our local community:

When on site, our engineers check the area for endangered species, protected plant species, trees subject to a Tree Preservation Order, and protected archaeology. No work is commenced until it has been confirmed it is safe to do so without causing environmental damage.

BCAS has worked hard to become an approved EXOx supplier (Energy Solutions Oxfordshire) to advise local companies on energy-saving opportunities available to them.

BCAS makes a regular carbon offsetting donation to Make it Wild to support their tree planting and wildlife reserve construction initiatives.

And because every little helps, even the flower beds outside our offices have been planted with shrubs and flowers that support the local insect and bee population. Protecting and sustaining the environment really is at the heart of everything we do.

If you have any suggestions for further steps we can make to reduce our environmental impact, please feel free to send them our way at

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