At last night's glittering awards ceremony at the Seaplane Harbour, Marko Pomerants, Estonian Minister of the Environment, said the European Business Awards for the Environment (EBAE) were "Europe's best; Europe’s most environmentally friendly and Europe’s most innovative," adding "all the nominees for this year’s EBAEs have taken important steps to take us closer to a resource efficient circular economy; and we are here to celebrate their achievements. These enterprises prove that eco-innovation has a key role in European competitiveness."
The EBAE ceremony (organised by the European Commission) took place in Tallinn as a tribute to Estonia's fast growing reputation in Europe for successful eco innovation companies; and in recognition of its status as the best Eurozone country in which to do business.
The six winners were:
The International Cooperation Award
Fairphone B.V. (Netherlands)
Fairphone is a Dutch social enterprise, based in Amsterdam that is building a movement for fairer electronics. As the world’s first ethical modular smartphone provider, they lead by example and inspire the industry as a whole to act more responsibly, by putting social and environmental values at the core of business and work to create a competition not on technology but on fairness. They source materials that support local economies; conflict-free tin and tantalum in the DRC Congo, Fairtrade gold from Peru and they are working to integrate responsibly mined tungsten.
The Management Award (micro and small business)
Ladybird Farm Leisure Center (Hungary)
Tourism in a sustainable way
Ladybird Farm Leisure Centre was established to promote a lifestyle in harmony with nature and our environment. Attracting 65,000 visitors and providing 12,000 guest nights a year, Ladybird Farm has only developed attractions that do not consume any energy, or, if they do, the farm produces the necessary energy from renewable sources. A key element of their sustainability concept is the extensive use of renewable energy sources; the centre covers 80% of its energy need from sustainable sources through photo-voltaic solar panels and biomass. Their social value is considered equally important to financial profit and as such they introduced the concept of “Pay by Waste”: visitors can pay a part of their entrance fee by household waste, such as paper.
The Management Award (medium and large business)
CMS Window Systems ¬¬(United Kingdom)
CMS Innovation Hub
CMS Window Systems have created a unique facility, the CMS Innovation Hub – a previously derelict G-rated for energy building – where daily energy costs are now around £3.50 due to external “stone wool” insulation, thermally efficient windows and doors, energy-efficient lighting and IT equipment, and a heat recovery heat pump climate control system. The Hub is a working model of energy efficiency used for theoretical and practical training for stakeholders and peer organisations, providing them with the latest information on industry standards, sustainable construction practices and energy saving products.
The Product and Services Award
Hydromx International A.S. (Turkey)
Energy Efficient Heat Transfer Fluid for Heating and Cooling
Hydromx is a revolutionary nanofluid that achieved a step change in heat transfer efficiency with its enhanced heat transmission capability, generating substantial savings (up to 35%) in energy consumption of closed loop hydronic heating and cooling systems and so also decreasing in carbon emissions. Their products can be used in extreme temperature conditions without the need for additional chemicals such as antifreeze. In addition to the direct benefits, the product bears the potential to create its own ecosystem of new cleantech products that have enhanced energy efficiency due to improved hydronic heat transfer properties.
The Process Award
M2i Life Sciences (France)
Pheromonal mating disruption through paintball against the pine processionary moth
M2i is a leading company in Integrated Pest Management through pheromones, who have developed a patented technology which produces sexual pheromones for particular insect and pests to protect crops without using pesticides. The use of pheromones is a green and efficient solution which is selective and without residue, eutrophication and no development of resistance from the insect, and without harm to residents or applicators. The pine processionary moth is an invasive pest found in France whose numbers have been drastically reduced thanks to the M2i method which involves placing pheromonal gel into a paintball pellet and firing it into the trees where the moths are found.
Business & Biodiversity (Special Mention)
HiPP-Werk Georg Hipp OHG (Germany)
20 Years of HiPP Sustainability Management
HiPP is a high quality baby food manufacturer in Germany whose products are 100% made from organic raw materials in harmony with nature. HiPP is a founder member of the international initiative ‘Biodiversity in Good Company’, whose objectives include conserving biological diversity, sustainable use of its components and a fair and equitable sharing of the benefits that arise out of the utilisation of genetic resources. HiPP’s sustainability management has incorporated biodiversity into the company’s operations as a dedicated department, which has the entire supply chain in view, thus implementing systematic sustainability management at every level and anchoring the statement: “Being a HiPP staff member means being a sustainability staff member”.
More information on the winners, the runners-up, the selection procedure and past EBAE competitions can be found at http://ec.europa.eu/environment/awards/index.html.