SSEN Transmission has won international recognition for their excellence in environmental best practice. The awards celebrate the Transmission Owner’s achievements in protecting and promoting the natural environment, in line with its commitment to delivering biodiversity net gain on its major capital investment projects.
As winners of two Scottish Green Apple Awards in March this year, SSEN Transmission was shortlisted for the International Green Apple Awards, an annual international campaign to recognise, reward and promote environmental best practice around the world. Attending the ceremony, held at the Houses of Parliament on Monday 25 November, SSEN Transmission beat out tough competition to scoop two Bronze International Green Apple Awards.
The first award recognised the work SSEN Transmission did in partnership with their contractor Balfour Beatty to improve local flora and fauna habitats for the Great Yellow Bumblebee during the construction of the Thurso South substation, which formed a key part of SSEN Transmission’s flagship Caithness-Moray project. After engaging and seeking feedback from local wildlife experts, changes to the proposed wild flower and tree species mix were introduced which has successfully encouraged and supported the local Great Yellow Bumblebee population, a rare endemic species found only in the North of Scotland.
The second award celebrates SSEN Transmission’s work in mitigating the impact of its construction activity on the local Osprey population ahead of the planned the reinforcement works to Alyth substation by erecting a new home for the birds, a 25m tower and two perching posts close to the birds’ existing nest. In creating such a welcoming environment for the birds, the Ospreys have now laid eggs on the platform every year since it was erected in 2014 and and at least ten osprey chicks have been observed on the platform over five successful breeding seasons.
Commenting on the further recognition of SSEN Transmission’s environmental credentials, Richard Baldwin, Head of Environment, said:
“We are delighted that both projects have received recognition on the international stage. They have both been a great success and demonstrate of what can be achieved, making long-term enhancements to the environment and society.
“As a responsible developer and in line with our wider sustainability ambitions as a business, we endeavour to ensure that our developments have a minimal impact on the local communities and environments in which we operate and we aim to provide additional benefits where possible.
“These projects demonstrate our commitment to the environment in which we operate, and we are extremely proud to be formally recognised for our efforts by such a high-profile environmental organisation like The Green Organisation.”
These awards demonstrate SSEN Transmission’s commitment to making long-term enhancements to the environment and society. Protecting and enhancing biodiversity is an essential element of a truly sustainable society. SSEN’s sustainability strategy sets out its commitment to ensuring its activities not only maintain the existing balance that exists, but help to enhance the biodiversity in the areas it constructs and operates, creating a biodiversity net gain.