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MITIE’s waste offering wins Gold at this year’s Green Apple Awards

MITIE, the FTSE 250 strategic outsourcing and energy services company, was awarded the prestigious Gold standard at a ceremony held at the House of Commons last week.

The Green Apple Environmental Best Practice Awards celebrated MITIE’s unique waste outsourcing partnership with three major organisations: IKEA, Network Rail and Santander.

The partnerships succeeded in reducing their waste environmental impact and mitigated the costs of the process by taking them on a Zero Waste journey.

MITIE’s partnership with Santander won gold and the partnerships with IKEA and Network Rail were awarded silver.

David De Sa (MSc., MBIFM, MBICSc), Soft Services Manager for Santander Global Facilities said:

“Santander and MITIE have worked extremely hard over the past 18 months to achieve this fantastic accolade in being awarded the prestigious Gold Standard at the Green Apple Awards Ceremony at the House of Commons on Monday 12th November.

“This is  testament to all the innovative ways of working that we have implemented and the hard work and effort by all parties and their dedicated teams to ensure that we continue to achieve and maintain such a high level of recycling / landfill diversion methods and percentile across the Head Office portfolio within Santander UK.”

The Zero Waste journey was deemed utopian as recently as two years ago, but with a widely accepted target of 90% diversion from landfill and incinerators, more and more organisations are now setting zero waste as a corporate CSR aim.

Not only does this help organisations to achieve their CSR goals but it also saves them money, by diverting useful materials from landfill, and saving on the landfill tax or the high incineration costs.

Mike Taylor, MD for MITIE’s waste business said: “There’s no better saying in waste than ‘Less is more’. These awards are demonstrating that IKEA, Network Rail and Santander have understood what this means by choosing MITIE as their zero waste partner. We are delighted to be working with all three companies to ensure they successfully achieved best practice in the design and implementation of their ambitious waste strategies”.

There is a great sustainability story behind each award.

MITIE won Gold with this exceptional entry. In September 2009, Santander appointed MITIE as their total facilities management partner. This included delivering recycling and waste management across their portfolio of head office buildings in the United Kingdom. Santander already recycled 62% of all waste generated in these buildings (currently 19 buildings) and through partnering with MITIE, this increased to an average of 79% in 2010.

In 2011, Santander and MITIE agreed a plan to look at waste management in a more holistic way in order to further improve their sustainability performance. The plan aims to achieve 100% landfill diversion by 2013 by focusing on the waste hierarchy and the three R’s: reduce, reuse and recycle.

Between 2010 and 2011, the waste output has decreased by 8%, a total reduction of 466 tonnes year on year. More reduction has occurred in 2012.

At the same time, the recycling rate has increased from 79% in 2010 to 94.9% in the first 5 months of 2012 and the amount of general waste going to landfill has dramatically reduced from 21% of the total waste in 2010 to 3.8% in the first 5 months of 2012. This was mostly due to the high recycling rate but also because half of the general waste is now turned into energy.

This provides evidence that the all-encompassing approach taken by Santander and MITIE has succeeded and the partners are on target to divert all waste to landfill by 2013 in their zero waste journey.


A silver winner, as MITIE reduced dramatically IKEA’s environmental impact by recycling all their food waste from their Edinburgh store.

We took IKEA from 0% food waste recycling in 2009 to recycling over 6.5 tonnes of food waste per month.

Ikea and MITIE operated a phased implementation. Firstly, MITIE introduced a new bins system in the kitchen and involved the IKEA catering staff with the introduction of the scheme to ensure best practical fit and cultural acceptance.

Further communication was released to ensure best practice. Practical training sessions were delivered to IKEA kitchen staff to demonstrate the ease of use of the new segregation system and address any concerns in its use.

The second phase happened as IKEA doubled the cafeteria area. The food recycling scheme was extended to the public areas, implementing a highly efficient segregation scheme for the general public to use.

CORE is MITIE’s food recycling business, collecting over 5,000 tonnes of food waste from businesses and public sector organisations in Scotland.

MITIE invests £11 into local social businesses for every tonne of waste it recycles, helping to create jobs and volunteering or training opportunities for homeless and disadvantaged people, in partnership with the Cyrenians charity.

Network Rail

A silver winner, thanks to the early engagement between MITIE, Network Rail, and subcontractors, which helped to surpass the target of 90% landfill avoidance and achieved 100% diversion of the waste from landfill.

Network Rail opened a new national centre known as The Quadrant:MK in the third quarter of 2012. The centre centralised functions such as engineering, logistics, IT, procurement, planning and finance and is home for over 3,000 employees.

The partnered with MITIE to sustainably manage the waste occurring from the fit-out of this new state-of-the-art complex, including the atrium, hospitality areas and parking facilities.

Network Rail and MITIE researched and analysed all things waste and set out a implementation mechanism and service level agreements (SLA), so that waste reduction and recycling would be prioritised and integrated into the subcontractors behaviours. It became a key part in the recruitment drive, as all subcontractors had to sign up to the waste process, as part of their SLA’s.

In accordance with the waste strategy plan, MITIE setup a recycling compound on-site and all waste materials were taken to the compound by the subcontractors, where all waste streams were constantly assessed to prevent contamination and ensure maximum rebate value from the recycling companies.

The compound included separate waste areas for segregating the following waste streams:

·         Battery
·         Confidential office waste
·         Fluorescent tubes
·         Food waste
·         Green waste
·         Hazardous waste
·         Light bulbs
·         Metal scrap
·         Mixed recycling (cans & plastics)
·         Mixed waste (residual sent to MRF and EfW)
·         Paper / card packaging
·         Plastic packaging, including film
·         Polystyrene
·         WEEE
·         Wood

MITIE engaged directly with the subcontractors from the start, making sure that the segregation detailed in the site waste management plan was strictly adhered to so that no contamination occurred. On-going communication ensured that the same level of segregation continued throughout the project.

Best practice also dictated that the segregated materials were then sent to be recycled. MITIE selected recycling companies based on environmental performance, distance from the site, cost and reliability and managed the collections process to limit transport, while ensuring the waste flow in the compound always remained efficient. When recycling was not possible, the residual was sent to an Energy-from-Waste plant to recover electricity and divert it from landfill.

100% of waste was diverted from landfill and 86% was recycled. We believe that MITIE’s carefully designed waste management plan is setting a new best practice standard in fit-out waste management, with optimal environmental and financial performance.

Visit us at www.mitie.com
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