UK business briefs: Climate warning, Indoor regulations, RHS position, Landfill renovation, Welsh water, Risk manager, recycling capacity, Chemical art

The world faces a surge in extreme weather events because of global warming and governments must act immediately to avert disaster, Britain's chief scientist Sir David King stated this week. He said that levels of carbon dioxide were at their highest ever and were still rising due to the burning of fossil fuels. "Action is affordable. Inaction is not," he said.

The Government this week announced a series of proposals to improve indoor air quality by reducing pollution from flueless gas appliances such as gas cookers, water heaters and flueless gas fires. New research suggests that under certain conditions, levels of some pollutants in homes may exceed outdoor air quality standards. There is no immediate danger to users of these appliances, but certain pollutants are undesirable and the Government will now take action to reduce the concentrations released from these appliances.

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) is strengthening its focus on environmental issues affecting gardeners with the creation of a new full-time post of environmental advisor. The new position means that for the first time an RHS employee will be dedicated solely to environmental activities. The advisor will develop the RHS’s environmental policies and a programme of activities to promote the charity’s interest in environmental sustainability. Other responsibilities will include advising staff on key environmental developments in the UK and elsewhere, and participating in key environmental fora, of relevance to gardeners. The position is based at RHS Garden Wisley in Surrey.

An historic chapel in a cemetery noted for wildlife has been restored by Lewisham Council in a £60,000 renovation scheme jointly funded by The Onyx Environmental Trust. The Trust’s grant was awarded through the Landfill Tax Credit Scheme and financed half the work to bring the Victorian chapel at the Ladywell and Brockley Cemeteries back into use as a new wildlife resource and education centre for school children.

Dwr Cymru Welsh Water has selected Black & Veatch as Preferred Tenderer for its extensive AMP4 programme and beyond. For an unprecedented 10-year duration, this major engagement will see delivery of water and wastewaster schemes throughout the Welsh Water region. The anticipated value of AMP4 is in excess of £60M.

Environmental Resources Management (ERM), a leading provider of environmental consulting services, has appointed Kevin Kinsella to lead its Risk team in the UK. Kevin will be responsible for increasing ERM’s share of the risk market in the oil and gas sector. He will also help increase the teams’ market share in the process and transport markets.

Recycling company Recresco, formerly known as Midland Glass, has been able to significantly expand its reprocessing capacity thanks to lease funding on four pieces of equipment worth a total of £300,000. The lease deals on two glass separators, one colour glass pre-sorter and a plastic baler were all arranged with Bank of Scotland Asset Finance through eQuip, the lease guarantee scheme run by WRAP. Recresco, which processes glass, plastics and cans, is the second company in the country to lease equipment with the help of the scheme, which was set up earlier this year.

And finally, the first ever Holding up the mirror art competition is being launched today by the Chemical Industries Association (CIA), giving young artists the opportunity to win a national prize of £3,000. Students from around the UK are being invited to create a work of art that explores the chemical industry’s contribution to sustainable development. The chemical industry welcomes this opportunity to see sustainable development from the perspective of the art world through this competition, as well as from more traditional stakeholders.

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