Case Studies

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At Veolia we are always striving to deliver innovative ways to turn waste into a resource for our customers throughout the UK. Click below for some examples of our great work in action.

Embankment Square

One Embankment Place is a prestigious high rise office and leisure complex which is home to a number of businesses and retail outlets. Located in the heart of the City of Westminster, it links with Charing Cross railway station, the fifth busiest rail terminal in London.

Due to the historic nature of the building structure and complex logistical challenges, all waste generated on site had previously been disposed of in a compactor which was then treated as general waste. In 2012, Veolia and both the Site Facilities Manager and the newly-appointed Station Manager resolved to address this situation in order to improve environmental performance.

The Challenge

The complexity of the facility required an innovative solution to accelerate recycling and landfill diversion without disruption to train journeys. All three parties undertook a comprehensive review of the existing waste management services with the aim of developing a more efficient and sustainable service.

The Solution

Veolia immediately conducted two waste audits. This identified that approximately 90% of waste was made up of paper, packaging and other recyclates. The remaining waste items were comprised of food and food packaging. If segregated correctly, all waste could therefore be treated through our recycling process.

The second phase of the project involved a detailed analysis of the quantities of waste produced by the various office and retail operations. The results proved that the majority of food waste was produced at the retail outlets within the station, with very little contamination from the remaining train waste.

The participation of these retail outlets was therefore critical to the whole process and Veolia’s Account Manager paid special attention to this area. The success of the project would also rely heavily upon the outcome of this element of food segregation.

A promotional campaign was then developed to raise awareness across the entire facility. This included site-specific educational posters, supported by meetings and presentations to key stakeholders to ensure everyone was correctly informed and committed to the new process. Waste Champions were also identified and taken on an educational visit to Veolia’s Southwark facility so they could see what happens to their waste when it is collected and treated.

All retailers were provided with food waste caddies lined with biodegradable bags to separate the two waste steams into wet (food) and dry (recycling). All mixed recyclates are now collected and treated at the Southwark facility, whilst food waste is treated through anaerobic digestion and turned into garden fertiliser.

Saved approximately £4,000 per month

Between December 2012 and February 2013 the site

recycled 258 tonnes of waste

which would previously have been treated as general waste. 

Greater visibility of the waste items has also resulted in better stock control by the retailers on site

creating even more economic benefits.


The Result

The segregation of train waste began in December 2012 and to date has saved approximately £4,000 per month. Prior to the project the client was spending over £150,000 per year disposing of their waste. Between December 2012 and February 2013 the site recycled 258 tonnes of waste which would previously have been treated as general waste. Greater visibility of the waste items has also resulted in better stock control by the retailers on site, creating even more economic benefits.

What our client had to say

“This project was approximately 18 months in the making. One of the hardest parts was convincing the tenants on the estate of the benefits which would be achieved once the scheme was up and running. Veolia played a key role in assisting the Estate’s Facilities Management team to undertake the required consultation with the tenants, provide adequate signage and training, set up the new collections and also provide the necessary bins and biodegradable bags. This project just goes to prove how a good working relationship can assist with implementing new initiatives. This project has not only reduced costs, reduced waste, improved our green credentials and CSR reputation but also has had an unforeseen benefit whereby some of our tenants have amended their waste disposal operations throughout their entire company.”