British Precast 2018 Sustainability Award Winners Combat Insectageddon!

14 Feb 2019

This week sees evidence published in the journal of Biological Conservation and widely reported in the media that shows an alarming trend of insect species decline which, if left unchecked, could cause a collapse of the world’s ecosystems. The decline dubbed ‘Insectageddon’ affects more than 40% of insect species, with a third now endangered. The rate of insect extinction is currently eight times faster than that of mammals, birds and reptiles.

While it may seem hard to get worked up over the little critters, especially against the backdrop of well publicised looming extinctions of some of the worlds most majestic mammals, we should be very concerned. Insects are essential for the proper functioning of the world’s ecosystems, acting as pollinators and nutrient recyclers, as well as food for other animals.

Much of the cause of, and solution to, this crisis must be attributed to the farming sector (as well as other contributors to climate change) but that doesn’t mean other industries shouldn’t play their part in protecting biodiversity.

The Mineral Products Association (MPA) has an excellent biodiversity policy and carries out a wide range of work in this area. Quarry restoration, for example, provides a major opportunity to protect and enhance biodiversity with over 8000 hectares of UK priority habitats already created.

This desire to protect biodiversity also extends to our precast sector. The British Precast 2018 Sustainability Best Practice Award was given to Aggregate Industries (AI) for their work creating ‘Bug Hotels’ at their Burton factory. A total of 12 ‘Hotels’ were constructed from surplus and waste materials by employees during gaps in their normal work schedule.

AI’s team will monitor the species using the hotels which, coupled with their wild flower areas, should encourage a wealth of insect life to the site, including butterfly species.

Employees at AI are rightly very proud of their biodiversity initiatives because it shows that it is a cause that can be championed across the sector and not just by the quarry teams. At British Precast we are proud of our 2018 Sustainability Award winners and are looking forward to seeing what great entries we have for the 2019 Awards.

Find out about the MPA Quarries and Nature by visiting their website.

You can enter, review previous winners and find news on the British Precast Awards at: https://www.britishprecast.org/awards.aspx