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Kent-based fitted furniture manufacturer for hospitals and schools David Bailey Furniture Systems has set about reducing its carbon footprint by virtually eradicating manufacturing waste from its factory in Broadstairs.
As part of a £300,000 expansion programme, the company has invested £90,000 with a loan from The Carbon Trust in a burner, hopper and compacter at its premises to reduce and burn 90% of its waste. This formerly amounted to four tonnes of timber and mixed waste every week, which used to be sent to landfill sites.
The system offers a number of key benefits, not only environmentally but also financially, for the company. Heating bills within the factory will be cut as resulting heat from the new burner will be positively harnessed to provide heating to the building during the winter. Any excess heat is released cleanly into the atmosphere as the system burns at 850 – 1,000°C, thereby combusting any noxious emissions. The dramatic decrease in waste being sent to landfill will also reduce the company’s skip and transportation costs, alongside the obvious benefit to the environment.
George Goldfinch, production director at David Bailey Furniture, said: “Minimising our waste so dramatically is a significant step towards reducing the company’s impact on the environment, both locally and globally, and becoming carbon neutral. The combination of improved operating efficiencies and our greener credentials will also help forge an ever more competitive edge for us in the market.”
David Bailey Furniture consulted with the Environment Agency and The Carbon Trust, which provided a £90,000 loan for the system. The company also sought planning permission from Thanet District Council for the installation at its factory in Pysons Road Industrial Estate, Broadstairs.
In discussion with The Carbon Trust, and in preparation for the installation, the company was required to provide a wealth of data on the effects the burner system will bring about. Significantly, as well as the decrease in volume of waste that will now reach landfill, the company’s move away from the use of fossil fuels with its original gas-fired heating system for the factory also made the investment so important and worthwhile.
George commented: “As part of our initiative and ongoing environmental commitment, we will now be talking with suppliers to look at ways in which we can work together and recycle even more waste and raw materials. We will also be looking into additional schemes internally. For instance, we recycle or reuse all the paper in our offices and will be working to identify other areas we can improve on.”