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Saving water and improving the environment
Release date: Thu, 13/12/2012
Bristol City Council has won an environmental award for how well it is managing the water environment through the services it provides to the public and the water efficiency of its buildings.
This prestigious award from the European Commission, was given to Bristol in the category best large public organisation. The Award is given to organisations that have the highest standards of environmental management and have adopted the rigorous Eco Management and Audit Scheme - EMAS. Every part of the Council has now implemented this standard and it is independently inspected.
Cabinet Member Gus Hoyt, said “Historically, water has been the heart of Bristol. I am delighted that this award recognises how the city is caring for the water environment which adds so much to the quality of life of citizens. So much of this work goes unseen, underground and about preventing pollution, so it is fantastic that through this award we can celebrate the many people who have made this happen.
"I am also pleased that by putting the environment impacts first - through systematic management - the Council is saving money on its water bills too, demonstrating that looking after our environment can and does save us money. I hope that we will strive to be even better in the years to come.“
The council has reduced its water consumption by 10% over the last two years by targeting its highest consuming sites and in partnership with Bristol Water identifying leaks. This is saving both water and approximately £40,000.
Patrick Bulmer, Environment Manager for Bristol Water said: “We have been delighted to support Bristol City Council in its drive to improve water efficiency. As a large water user, the Council has not only been able to make considerable savings by implementing the water-saving measures we have helped to identify, it sets an excellent example for other organisations in the Bristol area on the importance of efficient water use. We look forward to developing the partnership we have built between our organisations.”
The Council has changed its planting in parks - choosing drought resistant plants which require less watering. Annual bedding plants have been replaced by perennial plants and as part of Tree Bristol it will be replacing water thirsty trees with those that need less water.
Bristol has a strong connection to water owing to its maritime history and continues its relationship through its regenerated Harbour at the heart of the city. The appearance of otters and annual Triathlon swimmers is testament to the improving water quality of the harbour.
Bristol City Council has worked with the Environment Agency and Wessex Water to improve water quality in the harbour by improving sewers and initiatives such as the Get on Board Campaign where boaters make sure they dispose of their waste correctly and don’t pollute the harbour.