Environmental legislation under the microscope at EcoCampus Cedrec workshop
Published: 29 Nov 2013
Expert advice on how the latest environmental legislation affects universities and further education colleges will be available from Cedrec at the forthcoming EcoCampus legislation update (10 December) at Nottingham Trent University.
Cedrec is EcoCampus’ exclusive partner and will be advising environmental, compliance and facilities managers and others from across the UK with responsibility for achieving and maintaining certification to ISO 14001 and similar environmental management systems, such as EcoCampus on the latest legislation and developments.
This will include a review of current legislation from the UK and Europe along with guidance on how to ensure compliance in relation to ISO14001 and EcoCampus requirements.
Cedrec’s auditor and director Gareth Billinghurst will lead the event. He said: "Trying to work out which legislation applies to you is hard work. So a key area of discussion will be how to prepare an environmental register of legislation.
"Environmental legislation is being revised and updated constantly, so it’s important that those responsible understand the risks involved and have the facts to hand.
"The forthcoming EcoCampus update is an important CPD event for those who want to find out more about the very latest legislative thinking and understand the implications for their own facilities and sites if the law is broken."
Cedrec specialises in providing public and private sector organisations with help and advice in understanding, interpretating and complying with environmental and health and safety legislation and regulations. The company offers a range of specialist consultancy and subscriptions services.
EcoCampus is the leading national Environmental Management System (EMS) and award scheme for the higher and further education sectors, enabling universities and colleges to systematically identify, evaluate, manage and improve their environmental performance and practices.
It was launched by HEFCE in 2005 and has since attracted approximately 28% of the sector, including 33% of the Russell Group, which represents 24 leading UK universities. University of Brighton, Nottingham Trent University, University of Bradford, University of Worcester, and Manchester Metropolitan University (five of the top ten institutions in the 2013 Green League) are participants in the EcoCampus scheme.
More about the EcoCampus scheme can be found at ecocampus.co.uk or by contacting the EcoCampus team at Nottingham Trent University on 0115 848 3019.
Cedrec "Legislation Update" Roadshow!
Published: 06 Nov 2013
It's been a busy year, with some major changes in both environment and safety legislation. Did you manage to keep track of everything? Do you know what's on the horizon for the next 12 months?
To help you out, we're hitting the road to bring you our "Legislation Update". Throughout January we'll be in a city near you, giving you an informative, relaxed and plain English review of everything important from 2013 and what's going to affect your business in 2014.
This promises to be an invaluable few hours in the company of our friendly team of experts.
Coming to a city near you
- Newcastle - 7 January;
- Leeds - 9 January;
- Belfast - 14 January;
- Edinburgh - 16 January;
- Cardiff - 21 January;
- Birmingham - 22 January;
- Manchester - 23 January;
- London - 28 January.
At each venue, we'll cover environment in the morning and safety in the afternoon. Each will have two 45-minute sessions, the first looking back and the second looking forward. We'll even throw in plenty of tea and coffee so you don't get bored!
You're welcome to join us for the full day, or just pick environment or safety. We'll also be running a "Cedrec surgery" to help you with your register of legislation, management system or anything you're struggling with. So come and have a chat with us, and see how we can help.
It only costs £20 to come, and everyone will get a Cedrec pack - including a certificate which can be used towards your continuing professional development.
A little helmet, ensures that Mary, is carried safely, on her way
Published: 09 Dec 2013
In an unusual twist to the traditional nativity play, a performance of the Christmas story in south Wales will see Mary wearing a safety helmet as she rides the donkey to Bethlehem, or the square in Neath in this case.
Organisers of the church performance were told that the female star of the show, eight-year-old Libby Doorman, would have to wear a riding hat and possibly riding shoes because of fears she could fall off the donkey and to comply with health and safety laws.
"We've been advised that any young child riding a horse or donkey needs a hard hat for health and safety purposes," said Mark Barrett, 44, a youth worker at The Bridge Church in Neath, south Wales, who has organised the performance which involves a procession through Neath to the square.
"We’ve got to consider that Mary will be riding a donkey on a public highway. I know that the donkey will not be moving very quickly but we don’t want to flout the law.
"The owner of the donkey has told us because of his licence she will need to wear a riding hat."
Mr Barrett said they didn’t have a problem complying with the regulations and that they had also had to ensure that the child riding the donkey did not weigh more than eight stone. He said the riding hat was likely to be covered by Mary's costume on the day.
Mr Barrett added: "We take her through the procession area to the town centre, crossing a main road. We’ve had to put marshals along the way to make sure the crossing is safe and the animals don’t get startled."
Waste isn't just for Christmas . . .
Published: 06 Dec 2013
The Christmas period is a time for family, friends, giving, sharing and, unfortunately, waste (and usually lots of it!). Wrapping paper, boxes, cards and leftover food are just some of the things that many people will send to landfill this year, which has obvious environmental consequences.
So, instead of mindlessly throwing away your waste, have a think about how it could be put to better use or how it can be reduced (which will help the environment too!). Here are some tips:
- make lists before going Christmas shopping. Making sure you only buy what you need will help reduce waste;
- re-use Christmas cards (not as Christmas cards though!). Cut old cards up and use them as tags on presents;
- if you are sending cards, why not send an e-card?! It will cost less and is waste-free;
- compost any leftovers;
- take reusable bags with you or purchase a 'bag for life', which will reduce the amount of single use bags used and the amount of plastic going to landfill;
- avoid using wrapping paper and try and use gift bags which can be used several times over;
- buy a real Christmas tree with the roots still attached - this way you can replant it and use it year after year (or, if you can't find one with the roots still attached, take your real tree to a local recycling centre when you're finished with it, where it will be chipped and re-used in the local community);
- many new toys require batteries, so buy rechargeable batteries to avoid waste.
However, if you decide you'd rather throw the waste away, make sure you check with your local authority what can be recycled and recycle as much as you possibly can.
The 12 tips for Christmas
Published: 06 Dec 2013
'Tis the festive season again, and no doubt all over the UK employers and employees are preparing their offices for Christmas and possibly even an office Christmas party. If so, here are a few handy tips containing very simple steps to make sure you stay safe in the office:
- remind staff that alcohol should be consumed in moderation, especially if the day after the party is a working day! Ensure they know what is and what is not acceptable behaviour;
- make sure you have policies in place that address issues that could occur at Christmas, especially at an office party. This should include alcohol, occupational health and safety and harassment;
- carry out a risk assessment to make sure there are no risks - for instance if you are having an office Christmas party you might want to put measures in place to make sure no liquids are consumed next to electrical equipment;
- make sure you assess the risk of Christmas decorations. This does not mean they cannot be put up though! Analyse potential fire hazards, such as decorations covering the vent of a computer, and tidy trailing cables away to avoid trip hazards - simple steps to ensure a festive but safe office;
- if providing food at an office party, make sure you double check any dietary requirements of employees;
- label any foods containing nuts or gluten (or other ingredients which employees could be allergic to);
- if your party is off-site, remember it is still a work function and your office policies around health and safety and harassment may still apply;
- make arrangements for appropriate and safe transport at the end of the night;
- if putting up Christmas decorations in the office, make sure you use safe ladders and don't ever use a swivel chair;
- avoid using the photocopier to photocopy images of your anatomy. The top of the copier is glass and could shatter under weight - sitting at the Christmas table will therefore not be a comfortable occasion;
- turn off any Christmas lights at the end of the working day; and
- make sure the Christmas tree is sturdy - unsafe trees could topple on employees causing injury.
But most importantly, enjoy it!
The Housing Company who stole Christmas
Published: 06 Dec 2013
The Baggott family have been left in dismay this year after Scrooge council bosses ordered them to pull down their Christmas decorations, as well as ordering them to tear down their shed where they kept their decorations.
For the last eight years, John and Teresa Baggott have transformed their front-garden into a dazzling Santa’s grotto, along with a mechanical Father Christmas, much to the delight of their disabled teenage son.
However, Sanctuary Housing in Devon told the family, whose decorations raise thousands of pounds for charity, that they had to take down all the hooks and the electric boxes on the wall because they didn't want electrics outside the house.
Mr Baggott says the family are so upset they want to move to a new home with their three boys, including disabled son Shea, 14, who suffers from a muscle and nerve-wasting condition.
He added: "We put a lot of work into it. We put our heart and soul into it and it looked pretty good. Shea loved the light. He would sit out there for hours in his wheelchair looking at them. He's upset and he has picked up that we're stressed."
The annual display, which takes around two weeks to assemble, last year earned them first place in the the residential category of the Torbay Winter Glitterland competition and has raised more than £8,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
A spokeswoman for Sanctuary Group confirmed the family were told they were 'not allowed to tamper with the electrics of the property'.
She said: "As standard with rented accommodation, tenants should not tamper with the electrics, build onto or extend the property without their landlord's consent, and Sanctuary has only very recently been made aware of the extent of work done to the home.
'The family has significantly altered and extended the electrics at the property and we have serious concerns about the safety of these works.'