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CEO’S Statement

We have made a promising start with a strong CSR performance and we have ambitious plans in the pipeline for the coming year

Welcome to the first Corporate Social Responsibility Report (CSR) from Renewi plc. Renewi was born at the start of 2017 from the merger of two leading recycling companies – Shanks and Van Gansewinkel (VGG). We believe that, together, we can serve our customers, communities and people in an even better way.

We are fully aligned in our ambition to operate sustainably. The former Shanks and VGG businesses had aligned visions regarding “waste no more” and this has sustainability at its heart. We also reported on comparable sustainability indicators and set similar types of sustainability targets. This has made it possible for us to produce a fully merged Renewi CSR report swiftly. Our CSR activities focus on three key areas: the environment, our people, and our local communities. We decided to focus on these areas after using a structured approach to identifying what is material to us and our stakeholders

Our CSR activities across Renewi are underpinned by our purpose: giving new life to used materials.

A proud performance

I am pleased with the progress we achieved last year. Of the 15 million tonnes of waste our sites handled, 90% was recycled or recovered for use in new products or energy production. By doing so, we prevented more than three million tonnes of carbon being released into the atmosphere and we produced more than 172 billion watt hours of green electricity – enough to supply 40,000 homes.

We performed well against our safety objectives too. Our people’s safety is our top priority and we must do all we can to ensure they go home safely every day. Our lost time injury frequency improved by 5% over the year. The rate we closed out our “near miss” reports with effective plans also improved by 26%. These positive numbers are thanks to Shanks and VGG bringing strong safety cultures to Renewi.

Building and sharing our expertise in sustainability is a key part of creating good relations with society. We do this by investing in innovation. In 2016/17, we focused on building our expertise in gasification technologies – a way of converting waste into synthetic gas, which can then be used to generate electricity. Two gasification-related projects, in the UK and the Netherlands, are progressing well. Next year, we intend to increase our investment in innovation. Our target is to participate in 20 innovation projects over a five-year period. The projects will be selected according to their alignment with our vision, their sustainability impact, and their potential financial returns.

Future plans

We also plan to stretch our CSR activities. We have challenged ourselves to work towards a 95% recycling and recovery rate, a 10% increase in carbon prevention, and a 60% increase in green electricity production by 2020. We also aim to reduce both our accident and lost time injury frequency rates by 25%

We have made good CSR progress as two separate companies. Over the coming year, I am confident that we will take the best from both former companies to deliver a CSR performance that is greater than the sum of our parts.

Peter Dilnot
Chief Executive Officer