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AWE Aldermaston recognised at prestigious annual MOD awards

An Aldermaston project has seen success in the Ministry of Defence’s (MOD’s) annual Sanctuary Awards.

The long-running awards — which celebrate their 33rd anniversary this year — showcase military and civilian efforts across defence in the UK and abroad to protect the environment.

Demolition of the redundant treatment plant at AWE Aldermaston. Credit: (c) Crown
Demolition of the redundant treatment plant at AWE Aldermaston. Credit: (c) Crown

The award recognised the project’s work to reduce the impact of the demolition, including efforts to crush and reuse concrete waste on-site where possible, rather than sending it off-site.

Richard Brooks, principal environmental manager for the Defence Infrastructure Organisation — which runs the awards — said: “The Sanctuary Awards and Sanctuary Magazine recognise the incredible work being undertaken by MOD personnel, defence industry suppliers and partnerships with external environmental organisations in stewardship, climate change and sustainability.

“Well done to all of the winners and thank you for your contribution to making defence greener.”

The efforts of staff at AWE Aldermaston will reportedly see carbon emissions slashed by reducing vehicle movements to nearly 2,500, as well as generating savings of £484,000 by reusing the crushed concrete as infill material.

Overall, 99.98 per cent of waste from the demolition was reused or recycled, with only 0.02 per cent going to landfill.

Local suppliers were used wherever possible, which reduced the length of journeys to the site, minimising expenditure and carbon emissions.

Wastewater from dust suppression during the demolition was treated on-site and discarded through the site drainage system, saving £75,000, with a further £10,000 saved through rainwater harvesting.

The awards ceremony was held in Portsmouth and livestreamed to an online audience.

Winners and runners-up were presented with their awards by rear admiral, Paul Beattie, and James Clare, the MOD’s director of Levelling Up, the Union, Climate Change and Sustainability..

More than 100 entries were received, which collectively reduced energy production by seven per cent and carbon emissions by taking the equivalent of 4,000 cars off the road for a year.

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