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Forestry Commission Wales has achieved international certification for the environmentally friendly way it goes about its day to day business.
The Commission achieved certification to the environmental management system standard, ISO 14001, after carrying out improvements right across the organisation, from the energy performance of its offices to the way it deals with waste.
The environmental award followed a rigorous assessment by independent assessment body, Lloyd’s Register Quality Assurance (LRQA).
The ISO certification complements the recognition FC Wales has received for the way it manages the Welsh Government’s woodlands.
Since 1999, the Commission’s forest management has been independently certified as meeting the UK Woodland Assurance Standard (UKWAS).
Gaining ISO 14001 certification in addition to UKWAS means FC Wales can demonstrate its environmental credentials across all its activities.
Forestry Commissioner Jon Owen Jones accepted the prestigious ISO 14001 certificate from David Derrick, Business Centre Manager of LRQA, at the Commission’s office in Resolven.
FC Wales Director, Trefor Owen, said, “This certification is a tribute to the commitment and enthusiasm demonstrated by all our staff in the way they approach environmental management issues.
“The environmental management system we have built into our working practices has provided an excellent framework for improving our environmental performance, quality, and effectiveness right across the board.”
Among the improvements carried out were:
• offices, visitor centres and other buildings made more energy efficient by increasing insulation, replacing windows and doors, installing better heating systems and solar photo-voltaic panels
• financial savings over time through reduced energy consumption
• construction of waste transfer stations to deal with waste, both office generated and rubbish fly-tipped in woodlands
• targeted staff training on environmental issues
• improved staff travel plans to reduce CO2 emissions and using smaller, more fuel efficient vehicles,
• better systems for dealing with environmental emergencies, and
• maintenance programmes for office air conditioning units and refrigeration units.
LRQA’s David Derrick said, “LRQA works in partnership with its clients to help them effect real change through their organisations. We are delighted that the Forestry Commission Wales has achieved certification to ISO 14001.
“This is a clear sign of FC Wales’s commitment to continual improvement in the areas of environmental performance. Having a robust management system will help reduce costs, manage and improve its impact on the environment and enhance awareness of environmental issues with its people.”
Caption: David Derrick from LRQA (left) presents Jon Owen Jones with the ISO14001 certificate.
NOTES TO EDITORS
A total of 14.3 per cent of Wales is covered by woodlands. Of this, 38% (126,000 hectares/311,000 acres) is owned by the Welsh Government.
Forestry Commission Wales is the Welsh Government’s department of forestry and manages these woodlands on its behalf.
More information on the woodlands of Wales is available on www.forestry.gov.uk/wales
Press office contact: Clive Davies on 0300 068 0061, mobile 07788 190922, email firstname.lastname@example.org