Roper Rhodes Group Carbon Neutral Initiatives
Roper Rhodes has for some time realised the importance of sustainability with the need to take positive action now.
They have undertaken many initiatives to improve the company’s environmental impact including solar panel installations at Head Office, re-wilding of areas around its Distribution Centre and electric vehicle trials amongst the Sales Team.
Leigh Leather, Managing Director commented: “We have a long history of being community minded by supporting local organisations through our charitable trust, these initiatives build on this to ensure we are playing our part to look after the wider environment and help protect it for future generations”.
Solar panel installation and re-wilding
Although there are several exciting new initiatives being introduced this is not a novel thing for the company, for example solar panels were installed at the Brassmill HQ as early as Summer 2018. These panels are now generating about 15,000kwh of electricity per year, providing a significant contribution to powering the entire building where 70+ people work every day. Coming back to 2021 at their other key site near Bristol a rewilding initiative has been introduced resulting in new trees, shrubs and pollinating flowers being planted to encourage insects to return to the area with the view to attracting other wildlife in the future.
Electric delivery vehicle trial and new electric sales force fleet
In conjunction with the vehicle manufacturer Maxus the company has started an innovative trial by adding a fully electric vehicle to its delivery fleet. The vehicle, a 3.5t long wheelbase van is performing deliveries to customers in the Bath and Bristol area and if successful will be rolled out further.
William Steele, Operations Director added “whilst there is a good deal of discussion about the switching of delivery vehicles from Diesel to Electric, not much of it has converted into action yet, particularly for larger format vehicles. The technology poses challenges in terms of payload capacity and range. Therefore, many businesses are understandably wary of adopting them. But until businesses start to perform extensive real-world trials, we are unlikely to see much real-world progress. We want to be part of this progress. The fact that we operate a dedicated fleet of delivery vehicles gives us the flexibility to incorporate such a trial”.
Another trial is also underway to provide the sales force with fully electric vehicles. Initially starting with a test in selected areas, if successful these will be rolled out across the the sales force where practical within a year.
Gemma McGruddy, Head of Sales added “we have over 2,000 valued customers who like to see as frequently as possible, this introduction to the fleet means we can get to them but without damaging the air quality in the town/cities in which they live”.
Ensuring products reach customers in the best condition possible is essential for the business but this has inevitably led to an increase in the usage of more plastic and polystyrene materials. To address this a task force was established a year ago with the sole purpose of reducing wasteful packaging across all our categories & in particular to work toward the eventual elimination of all plastics.
Consequently, polystyrene has now been eliminated from packaging of our cisterns, will imminently be removed from all mirrors, and will be eradicated from all furniture by the end of the year. Simon Taylor, Marketing Director commented “I’m proud to say that this concerted effort across the business has received passionate support from all involved”.