ACM celebrates 15 years of growth
17 January 2007, News release from ACM Waste Management plc
As ACM Waste Management Plc celebrates its 15th anniversary, chief executive Andy Jacobs looks back over the last fifteen years and looks forward to the future.
ACM was formed in 1991 by myself and my partner Barry Bolton to supply waste compaction and recycling equipment to high volume waste producers and help them comply with new environmental legislation. This was a direct response to the introduction of the Environmental Protection Act in 1990 as well as a shared vision about the need to protect our environment and a realisation that the environmental industry would be a real growth area for the future.
The company grew steadily but it was in 1996, when we introduced our Complete Care Programme (CCP), that we began to experience significant, year-on-year growth. At that time we were working very closely with some of our bigger customers to expand our offering and it became clear, that in order to continue to develop the business, we had to give our customers exactly what they wanted - a complete solution for all their waste management requirements with a guaranteed outcome and cost saving.
The CCP was developed to fulfil those requirements and at the time of its inception, in 1996, was a totally unique offering. It guarantees customers a fully managed solution for all their waste and recycling requirements including legislative compliance, which is increasingly important as environmental legislation continues to become tougher and tighter.
In 1999 we moved to our current head office in Enfield with a team of 20 staff and the business has continued to go from strength to strength. In 2003 we were the UK's fastest growing environmental services company and we were ranked 14th in the Vantis Hot 100 (the UK's fastest growing privately owned companies by sales turnover growth over the preceding four years).
The waste management industry in the UK has become more and more environmentally focussed over the last 15 years and ACM has definitely been at the forefront of driving that change. We now have 40 full time staff and we are looking ahead to the next 15 years and the even greater challenges that the environmental services industry will face as the threat of global climate change means that the role we have to play in protecting our environment for future generations becomes even more vital.
Initially it was the introduction of the Landfill Tax in 1996 that provided a catalyst for businesses to look at recycling as a viable option together with the Producer Responsibility Packaging Legislation. It also helped material re-processors to secure investment to expand the UK's resources and markets for recycled materials - but there is still much more to be done - we desperately need the government to drive development forward and provide further investment in UK recycling facilities, as well as putting an end to the mass exporting of recyclable materials around the world.
It is vital now that we concentrate our efforts on the development of new technology to enable us to manage our waste more effectively and in a way that is not damaging to the environment. Landfill is becoming increasingly scarce in the UK and the development of new technology is not happening quickly enough to provide a viable alternative.
As we move further into the 21st Century we all, as individuals, as well as businesses need to take responsibility for our actions and take positive steps to protect our environment. We must reduce the amount of waste we produce, reuse what we can and recycle wherever possible - landfill must become the very last resort for disposing of our waste. The landfill tax needs to be increased to bring the UK in line with the rest of Western Europe and initiatives like bag and bin charges for domestic users need to be introduced - there are valuable lessons to be learned from the success of similar schemes in Ireland, for example.
Most of all we need clear commitment and guidance from Government on issues such as the development of waste to energy plants, as an alternative to landfill, where there are fears about emissions of harmful dioxins from the incineration process.
The last 15 years has been a very exciting time for all of us at ACM as we have seen the company grow, develop and move ahead of its competitors by establishing itself as a true environmental champion. Irreversible global climate change is perhaps the biggest challenge that mankind has ever faced. It will affect all of us the world over and will have a massive impact on our lives and businesses if we don't act now and make some positive changes to our behaviour and the way we live our lives.
Looking ahead to the next 15 years, ACM will be ready to face the challenges ahead by embracing new technology and new environmental legislation and helping our customers do the same!
For more information about ACM Waste Management Plc, call: 08700 777555, email: email@example.com or visit www.acmplc.com.
For further information please email ACM Waste Management plc