BIFM North Region “Driving the Sustainability Agenda in FM”

AstraZeneca’s Alderley Park was the venue for the latest BIFM North Region Key Learning Event. The Sustainability seminar was organised in collaboration with the BIFM Sustainability Special Interest Group and BIFM Midlands Region. As well as AstraZeneca kindly hosting the event, Sodexo, who deliver integrated FM services at the site, provided the catering to the attendees.

Over 75 members attended the seminar, which was kicked off by BIFM North Region Deputy Chair, Mark Whittaker and Simon Grinter from the BIFM Sustainability SIG. The event and hosts, was particularly topical, given the much publicised takeover offer for AstraZeneca by Pfizer.

Over 2,900 staff are employed at Alderley Park. However, following the decision last year by AstraZeneca to relocate its research and development to its Cambridge site, alternative uses are being developed for Alderley Park, following its recent sale to Manchester Science Parks.

Of the four key note speakers on the day, Gary Riddell, Associate Director of Facilities at AstraZeneca started the seminar by speaking of the three key elements of their sustainability strategy at the site; namely Environment, Reuse and Energy Management. Gary’s talk discussed the 100 acre farm they own and also how through a clear and focussed FM strategy they have exceeded their energy management and carbon reduction targets.

Richard Cairns, Facilities Manager of Everton Football Club, spoke to the seminar about sustainability projects at the club and their recent “Sustainability Award” for their “Small Fixes Which Make a Big Difference” at the Stadium Business Awards 2013. Their project centred around boiler replacements and the fitting of solar panels at the Goodison Park Ground, which achieved impressive payback timescales and allowed for further investment into other sustainability projects.

Daniel O’Connor, Founder of WARP-it,  was the next speaker and asked how organisations “can cut costs, waste and injury by re-using assets better.” Daniel mentioned that over half of organisations carbon emissions are supply chain related and how re-using /reselling assets can substantially reduce administration costs and time, as well as material costs. Daniel explained some of the impressive cost reductions WARP-it have achieved with customers such  as Dundee City Council and University College London.

The final speaker was Paul Clarke of the Pop Up Foundation. Paul told the audience of the three interconnected themes of social, economic and the environment and how the Pop Up Foundation started by developing an interactive game for young people with these key themes, which went viral. This was then the driver to the Foundation’s work with schools, coffee farmers and business and social enterprises. Paul message was  a clear one; such sustainable projects can be both life and world changing for those involved and “can start from very small seeds.”

Copies of the presentation slides are available on the BIFM North section of the BIFM website.  Several further Key Leaning Events are planned in the North Region in 2014 and are on the Event Calendar of the BIFM website.

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