Thermacore uses green-based growth to hit major targets

Mark Robinson, Thermacore’s Quality, Health, Safety & Environment manager - image courtesy of Thermacore
Mark Robinson, Thermacore’s Quality, Health, Safety & Environment manager - image courtesy of Thermacore.

Northumberland-based advanced manufacturing firm, Thermacore Europe, has used its lean and green approach to growth in order to reach a major milestone.

Thermacore Europe, which specialises in the design and manufacture of thermal management systems, has completely eradicated its reliance on landfill disposal of waste materials, which had previously peaked at 14 tonnes per year.

This has been achieved as part of an overall environmental management system, which has also delivered significant savings from more efficient energy use.

Thermacore has invested in LED lighting and auto-sensors across its European headquarters in Ashington and has worked with Utilitywise to secure gas and electricity contracts that will save around £20,000 per year.

Partners help Thermacore achieve green credentials

Another North East firm, Bishop Auckland’s The Shred Centre, has been appointed to manage Thermacore’s general waste management and recycling activities. The Shred Centre handles materials such as food, packaging, confidential paper and ‘Waste Electrical & Electronic Equipment’ (WEEE).

Liquids and chemical waste are classified as ‘hazardous’ and Thermacore works with a range of specialists, all licensed by The Environment Agency, to ensure these are recycled or disposed of safely and securely. Waste non-ferrous metals such as aluminium and copper are handled by EMR, the global leader in metal recycling. This reclaimed value generates an additional revenue stream for Thermacore.

Mark Robinson, Thermacore’s quality, health, safety & environment manager, said the firm’s environmental management system, which is accredited under BS EN ISO14001:2004, is boosting the balance sheet as well as helping preserve the planet. “This isn’t just the right thing to do from an ethical and environmental perspective, it’s fundamentally sound business sense,” he said.

“We started by addressing the culture of the business. Every employee has been trained in environmental awareness, waste management, the principles of lean manufacturing and continuous improvement to ensure we properly embed our approach and objectives across every part of the business from the shop floor to the canteen.

“By partnering with Utilitywise and The Shred Centre we’ve brought in specialists who have helped us become more efficient, delivering significant cost savings to the business while supporting the North East supply chain.”

Patrick Stephens, managing director of The Shred Centre, added: “Thermacore is a great business to work with. The team adopts a very proactive approach to the management of waste and they work with us in partnership rather than treat us as being outside of their business. The changes implemented by Thermacore have led to real improvements financially and environmentally and we’re very proud to count them among our partners.”

Thermacore Europe currently employs 73 people in Ashington. Its range of intelligent thermal management systems, heat spreaders, heat pipe assemblies and liquid cooling systems are used globally across a range of sectors including military, aerospace, communications, medical and automotive.