North Wales project saves £5m per year

North Wales Waste Network (NWWN), a two-year project dedicated to the provision of advice and guidance on waste reduction at source for small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs), came to an end in June this year. Savings of £1,255,000 per year have been identified for 40 participating businesses, with total projected savings of £5m per year for the overall project.


The scheme was sponsored by the Welsh Development Agency – North Wales Division, Environment Agency Wales, National Assembly for Wales and the European Regional Development Objective 5B Fund with support from CELTEC. Participants came from the manufacturing, leisure, food & drink and engineering sectors. Five supply chains encouraged 34 suppliers of goods or services to produce environmental policies for the first time. Eight businesses used the project as a conduit to the implementation of an Environmental Management System.

Overall projected environmental savings from 177 SMEs:

  • Reduction in energy costs equivalent to 123,000 tonnes of CO2 per year.
  • Reduction in wastes to landfill of 1,400,000 tonnes per year.
  • Reduction in aqueous discharges of 20,000,000m3.
  • Case study

    Friction Dynamics Ltd employs 180 people in the manufacture of brake and clutch linings for the automotive, marine, mining, construction, agricultural, aerospace, military and defence industries. The company’s energy costs are in excess of £450,000 per year, a large percentage of which was used in the over-capacity ventilation system for the control of asbestos. As a result of the project’s recommendations, an Environmental Committee was established reporting directly to the managing director.

    A total of 13 initiatives were identified at the site, providing cost savings of almost £260,000 per year.

  • Six opportunities to save energy resulted in a reduction of 220 tonnes of CO2, a saving of £87,000 per year through reducing the level of ventilation, reducing boiler flue gas temperature and using recirculated air for heating.
  • Two opportunities to save raw materials resulted in a saving of £50,000 per year through better control of moulded sheet thickness and ensuring that containers of liquids are fully emptied.
  • Two opportunities to reduce costs of landfill resulted in a reduction of 200 tonnes per year, a saving of £72,000 per year through reuse of materials and alternative arrangements for waste disposal.
  • Three opportunities to save water plus an equivalent volume of wastewater, resulted in a reduction of 25,000m3, a saving of £47,000 per year. This was achieved by the identification of previously unknown water leaks.
  • Participating



    potential annual savings £000s




    % of turnover


    in energy (tonnes CO2)


    in waste (tonnes)


    in water usage (m3)

    Roberts of Port


    100 6 1.6 350 n/a 16,000 Food
    South Caernarfon


    85 21 0.4 22 n/a 20 Food
    International Safety


    30 3 1.0 1 50 1,025 Manufacturing
    Friction Dynamics 260 11 2.4 220 200 25,000 Manufacturing
    Cwmni Cig Arfon 18 11 0.2 1 n/a 3,000 Food
    John Williams Windows 30 4.5 0.7 11 n/a n/a Construction
    Clifford Jones


    179 2.3 7.8 44 900 530 Manufacturing
    Read Construction 10 4.5 0.2 n/a 500 n/a Construction
    Portmeirion 30 2 1.5 6 200 n/a Leisure
    Harlech Frozen


    50 6 0.8 18 n/a n/a Food
    DMM Engineering 26 5 0.5 44 n/a n/a Manufacturing
    Hilton Seafoods 70 0.75 9.3 n/a 600 n/a Food
    TOTAL 888 77.05 1.15 717 2,450 55,575

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