Civils and stations

06.06.18

NR stations to tackle plastic use to become greener

Network Rail is to ban retailers from supplying plastic cutlery and cups in its managed stations from 2020.

The move forms part of the organisation’s plans to tackle three significant environmental issues in the country’s biggest and busiest stations.

Currently, 94% of Network Rail’s waste is diverted from landfills, but the company has pledged to use its position as one of the UK’s largest retail landlords to encourage the adoption of more green initiatives.

As well as the plastic cutlery and cup ban, Network Rail plans to implement a coffee cup recycling scheme and expand the role out of coffee ground recycling to all of its managed stations by the end of 2020.

Back in February, the organisation also commenced the roll out of its initiative to install free water fountains in its stations, launching in London’s Charing Cross station.

Already, the scheme has expanded to Liverpool Lime Street, Birmingham New Street, Manchester Piccadilly and London Euston, which the company says saves up to 1,000 plastic bottles each week.

Network Rail has written to the 150 retail brands based in its 20 managed stations to outline the plans to phase out plastic cutlery and cups, and has begun a back of house trial of coffee cup recycling at London’s Victoria and Paddington stations.

The trial sees cups collected from station retailers and placed into special bins in staff areas for recycling.

Mark Carne, chief executive of Network Rail, explained that the company is proud that it will be  tackling sustainability issues: “Network Rail has an important responsibility to the British public which goes much further than travel. We manage Britain’s biggest and busiest stations and we have to ensure we are using that role to make sensible and ethical decisions to protect our environment.”

Network Rail Property’s managing director, David Biggs, said: “This year’s theme for World Environment Day is ‘beat plastic pollution,’ and we are serious about making positive changes to do just that.”

He continued: “We want to be a leader in sustainability and we feel that each of these three goals show a real commitment to change, and recognition of our responsibility to protect the environment.”

Top image: alejandrosoto

 

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