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Being a responsible partner

We are passionate about helping society work towards a more sustainable future, and we do this working in partnership with different communities.

We are committed to playing our part in the circular economy and we work with a growing number of different stakeholders and partners within society who share our commitment.

Our activities have a positive benefit for society as a whole. However, we understand that our activities can also have an impact on the communities where we operate, and our goal is to act in partnership with our local communities. We aim to be a responsible partner by minimising the impact of our sites on the environment that we share with nearby residents, community organisations and businesses. We actively engage with communities and use the latest technology to help us identify potential issues before they arise, such as changes in air quality.

While we reduced the number of complaints received by most of our sites outside the UK, the total amount of complaints increased to 576 from 306. This was largely as a result of complaints received by Renewi’s new Derby plant, which is being commissioned by a contractor under our environmental permit. We set our objectives as a ratio per site as a more accurate measure than total number of complaints, no matter how many sites we operate. The lower the figure, the better the performance.

When Derby falls under our operational control, our focus will be to reduce the number of complaints.

Elsewhere, our good performance is a result of the quality of our processes across our sites and an increase in awareness about community issues among our employees.

We aim to meet global standards in health and safety, environmental management and the quality of our processes. Our formal management accreditations are an important indicator of this. As we continue to integrate, the number of formal accreditations will reduce while we maintain or improve overall coverage. For example, in Municipal our UK operations merged their individual site accreditations into one divisional accreditation. The aim for 2019/20 is to further merge different accreditations at a divisional level. This should further promote integration within our divisions.

The importance of diversity, quality and nondiscrimination is highlighted in our new Code of Conduct, which we launched together with a range of policies and protocols focused on the prevention of bullying and harassment, disciplinary measures and grievance mechanisms. It provides direction in who we are, what we do and how we act, as well as how we put our values into practice. We have an integrity management team which is responsible for putting these policies and protocols into practice. It also offers training and workshops to our employees and management on how to deal with integrity issues.

Moreover, we ensure that our business practices comply with legislation and guidance, and that we trade, operate and compete fairly and within competition laws. We will never gain or maintain business through illegal or unethical conduct. We do not tolerate any form of bribery or the offering or soliciting of a bribe by any employee or agent operating on our behalf. We do not make any payments to political parties, organisations or their representatives. We comply with ethical trading requirements and standards such as the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) anti-corruption directive. Our Board is independent from our executive functions.

While we do not operate in higher-risk countries, we uphold the principles in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights and therefore subscribe to the UN Global Compact. We respect our employees’ human rights. We support the rights of the child and do not employ anyone under 16. We consider the rights of other young people relative to their work and do not employee anyone under the age of 18 in operational roles. We will not tolerate any aspect of modern slavery. Our modern slavery statement can be found on our website.