environmental stewardship

Enhance environmental stewardship
100% of mineral extraction sites to have biodiversity, geodiversity and restoration management plans

“We’re just giving nature a helping hand, this is just what you’d hope would result from site restoration.”

David Park, Tarmac Restoration Manager North & Scotland

Protecting the environment is central to our operations. We work hard to minimise the impacts of quarrying and manufacturing activities at our sites and to carefully manage biodiversity and archaeological heritage.
With over 100,000 acres of land under our stewardship we recognise we have a duty to manage our assets responsibly and work hard to mitigate the potential environmental impacts of our operations. We carefully manage the biodiversity and archaeological heritage that can be present on our sites and take every opportunity to provide a net positive enhancement. All of our mineral extraction sites have restoration management plans, developed in consultation with the local planning authorities and communities in place.


Transition to ISO 14001:2015 standard
Trees planted over the past 3 years
MPA Cooper Heyman Cup for best restoration scheme
Working with wildlife - Enhancing Biodiversity

Our operations are run alongside the wildlife on and around our sites. We are careful in how we manage our sites during operations and believe that appropriate and sustainable minerals restoration represents potentially the biggest terrestrial habitat expansions opportunity across the UK. Site biodiversity management plans are an integral part of our environmental management system and are used to identify actions and targets for priority habitats and species. This supports our commitment of enhancing our contribution to environmental stewardship and frequently means working in partnership with regulators, wildlife bodies such as RSPB, The Wildlife Trusts and other community groups. Effective engagement with these stakeholders is crucial for the restoration of sites and the creation of priority habitats within them. It also dovetails well with much of our work on community engagement and employee volunteering.

A glimpse of the past - Archaeological heritage

Our approach to environmental stewardship extends to playing an active role in supporting archaeological discoveries as well as conservation work. We facilitate a number of archaeological digs and investigations each year to determine if any important historical sites exist on our land. This is a key requirement of every planning application and provides us with an opportunity to help develop knowledge about the historic environment in the area. We also fund further investigations into archaeological remains, so that they can be preserved off-site, catalogued or left in situ.

Stunning Restoration

Every one of our mineral extraction sites has a restoration plan and we work hard to ensure that these sites leave a positive long-term legacy wherever possible. Following completion of our extractive operations, some sites are returned to their original use, while other sites may be used to support local jobs through industrial or retail developments or to provide much needed housing. Not all of our sites lend themselves to significant biodiversity enhancement, but those that do can be transformed into nature reserves, wetland and grassland habitats, for community use or recreation. Some with some stunning results in ecological enhancement as you can see in our case studies.
Environmental Management

We assess the environmental risks and potential impacts from all our operations and consider factors such as the type of activity, the surrounding environment, local communities, compliance with legislation and industry best practice. Our environmental management system (EMS) is core to this approach.

Throughout 2017 our operational teams have continued to work hard to embed the Tarmac environmental management system and successfully completed the transition to the new ISO 14001:2015 standard across the business.

We report and record all incidents no matter how minor. During 2017, 53 environmental incidents and near misses were raised via our internal reporting system. These related mainly to minor spills, water management issues and releases of dust and other emissions to air. Steps are taken to address such issues as soon as possible and to prevent them occurring again.

During the year we received a total of 107 community complaints across our business, mainly related to issues with dust, vibration from quarry blasting, and vehicle movements. We actively encourage all incidents to be reported so that we can investigate them thoroughly, review our approach and make changes to prevent any recurrence.

Cement and Lime performance data

At our cement and lime plants we employ the best available technology to manage and minimize emissions to atmosphere from these processes. We have made significant reductions since 2000, our baseline year. In 2017, we achieved the following environmental performance in our cement and lime operations:

Cement 2017

Unit Particulates Sulphur Dioxide (SO2) Oxides Of Nitrogen (as NO2)
Tonnes 74 634 2144
kg/tonnes PCe 0.03 0.29 0.98
% reduction compared to 2000 -94% -94% -66%

Lime 2017

Unit Particulates Sulphur Dioxide (SO2) Oxides Of Nitrogen (as NO2)
Tonnes 17 15 50
kg/tonnes CaO 0.04 0.04 0.12
% reduction compared to 2000 -95% -96% -57%

* PCe – Portland cement equivalent, a standard industry normalising factor representing the tonnes of Portland cement manufactured from a tonne of cement clinker.

** CaO – Quicklime