Jeremy Ewen, Managing Director of London-based WLS Ltd, proudly explains how the company has enthusiastically embraced opportunities to introduce environmentally friendly business practices.
We all have a responsibility to do whatever we can to create a sustainable future by reducing greenhouse gas and carbon emissions. WLS was one of the first security system companies in the UK to recognise that it could help protect the environment by looking at every aspect of its day-to-day operations and evaluate if there was a better way of doing things. Unsurprisingly, every action we have made to improve efficiency and reduce waste has made good business sense, as well as make us ‘greener’.
Although our efforts to be more eco-friendly were well underway before we achieved NSI ISO 14001 accreditation, it has acted as a catalyst and has spurred us on to look at how we can continually improve our carbon footprint. ISO 14001 is the international standard for Environmental Management Systems (EMS). Designed by the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO), the standard has provided us with a framework from which we have set up an EMS to help us reduce waste, become more efficient and cut waste management costs.
As you would expect, at the heart of our EMS is a determination wherever possible to recycle any consumables, materials or equipment used either within our offices or on a client’s site. We have also installed low-energy lighting throughout our offices and workshops.
Providing installation, maintenance and service support to a long list of nationwide clients means our 36 company vehicles collectively clock up over 250,000 miles each year. To minimise the impact on the environment, all our engineers drive plug-in electric vans or plug-in hybrid SUV’s, whilst our on the road sales colleagues have been issued with low-emission vehicles. We are aiming for our fleet to be fully electric within the next 3 years.
Working in Partnership with Eco-friendly Clients
Our environmentally friendly business practices have stood us in good stead when tendering for large projects, which has resulted in WLS working as a sub-contractor for some of the UK’s most sustainable construction companies. Laing O’Rourke, for example, is a pioneer in the use of cement-free concrete and many of the products it uses have lower embodied carbon. Over the last decade it has succeeded in reducing construction waste per unit by 26% and in 2018, one of its projects was voted the ‘Most Considerate Site’ in the UK.
We are also delighted to have been awarded contracts by Mace, an international construction company which can proudly claim that 100% of the timber it uses is certified to be from sustainable sources and that more than 2,000 tonnes of carbon has been sequestered, thanks its use of cross-laminated timber.
Want to know more about WLS’s EMS? Fill out our contact form and we will be happy to share our knowledge of eco-friendly workplace best practice with you.