Di­a­mond geezers their com­pa­nies

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - UK & World Update -

IN to­day’s tough eco­nomic cli­mate, keep­ing a busi­ness go­ing can be a chal­lenge, and it’s all too easy to let things like en­vi­ron­men­tal con­cerns fall by the way­side.

Not so for two Peter­bor­ough busi­nesses, Di­a­mond Cars and River­ford Or­gan­ics at Sacrewell, who are both do­ing their bit to be green.

Of the two of these, per­haps the most sur­pris­ing is Di­a­mond Cars, the first taxi firm to be work­ing with Green Fes­ti­val or­gan­is­ers Peter­bor­ough En­vi­ron­ment City Trust (PECT).

As part of the fes­ti­val theme of ‘do one thing’, PECT has been urg­ing lo­cal taxi firms to switch off their car en­gines when sta­tion­ary.

Ste­wart Payn, green fes­ti­val co­or­di­na­tor, said: “There are around 650 reg­is­tered taxis in Peter­bor­ough. If each taxi switched off its en­gine for just 10 min­utes a day, this could save an es­ti­mated £401,822 per year in petrol.

“It would also re­duce the amount of CO2 emit­ted into the at­mos­phere by over eight tonnes per year.”

“There is a com­mon myth that it takes more fuel to turn the en­gine off and back on again than it does to leave it stand­ing. But ac­cord­ing to the En­ergy Sav­ing Trust, mod­ern cars use vir­tu­ally no ex­tra fuel when they are re-started with­out press­ing the ac­cel­er­a­tor.

“They sug­gest it is bet­ter to turn off the en­gine if you’re go­ing to be sta­tion­ary for more than a minute or two.”

Di­a­mond Cars has al­ready pledged to ‘do one thing’ by switch­ing en­gines off.

The com­pany is also the first taxi firm to sign up to green ac­cred­i­ta­tion scheme In­vestors in the En­vi­ron­ment – and has al­ready im­ple­mented var­i­ous ini­tia­tives to­wards a greener en­vi­ron­ment.

Tariq Iqbal, busi­ness devel­op­ment man­ager for Di­a­mond Cars said: “It is un­nec­es­sary to leave en­gines run­ning for pro­longed amounts of time while wait­ing for fares.

“Switch­ing them off is an easy way to save money and help the en­vi­ron­ment. All taxi firms in Peter­bor­ough should aim to re­duce the time they leave their en­gines run­ning, and there re­ally is no rea­son not to.

“We at Di­a­mond Cars are proud to be do­ing our bit for the en­vi­ron­ment and lead­ing the way in the in­dus­try.”

While a taxi firm pledg­ing to be green is per­haps un­usual, it will come as no sur­prise that River­ford Or­gan­ics – the com­pany that pro­duces and delivers or­ganic veg boxes around the area – is se­ri­ously com­mit­ted to be­ing green.

How­ever, what is im­pres­sive is the scale and thought put into River­ford’s green ef­forts.

The farm at Sacrewell has been fully or­ganic for three years, and for the food not grown on-site, River­ford tries to source it as lo­cally as pos­si­ble, with as­para­gus com­ing from March and mush­rooms from Yax­ley.

Of course some fruit and veg­eta­bles sim­ply can’t be sourced in the lo­cal area, or even in this coun­try, and for those, River­ford has a pol­icy of never air freight­ing.

The com­pany is also choosy about what it does im­port.

Gen­eral man­ager Gor­don Twigg said: “We don’t im­port things that are ob­vi­ously out of sea­son lo­cally - we don’t bring Span­ish straw­ber­ries in, for ex­am­ple. It’s things that can’t be grown here that get im­ported, or­anges, clemen­tines, that kind of thing.”

Aside from the food, River­ford tries to con­sider the en­vi­ron­ment in other as­pects of the busi­ness. An ef­fi­cient trans­port sys­tem means that trucks do not go out half loaded and lo­cal de­liv­ery trucks are also usu­ally full, mak­ing each jour­ney worth­while.

River­ford keeps pack­ag­ing to a min­i­mum, only wrap­ping things like mush­rooms and toma­toes, and en­cour­ages cus­tomers to re­turn pack­ag­ing for re-use or re­cy­cling.

At Sacrewell, the lights in ware­houses are on sen­sor switches so they’re not left on when no one is there. The chiller doors close au­to­mat­i­cally mean­ing they are not left open and there­fore don’t re­quire ex­tra en­ergy to keep cool.

Staff are en­cour­aged to be as ecofriendly as pos­si­ble, and there is an un­of­fi­cial car pool, which sees about four cars a day ar­rive at Sacarewell with four peo­ple in each one.

Gor­don said that be­ing green is a key con­sid­er­a­tion through­out the com­pany.

“The whole com­pany has that ethos, and has done right from when it was founded in Devon. For me hav­ing worked for other com­pa­nies it’s a lot eas­ier to be green here than in other places be­cause it’s sec­ond na­ture,” he said.

‘SEC­OND NA­TURE’: Gor­don Twigg said it’s easy to be green when work­ing for River­ford Or­gan­ics.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.