Over 400 business figures came together at the prestigious VIBES Awards to celebrate the achievements of innovative Scottish businesses which are demonstrating vision in implementing environmental best practice.
The awards were part of VentureFest, Scotland’s festival of discovery and innovation.
Twelve awards were presented on the day recognising the focus and efforts of a range of companies including Diageo, Vegware and FINDRA in helping to meet Scotland’s ambition to be a world leader on tackling climate change and inspiring others to follow their lead.
Winners came from across the country, from The Outer Hebrides to Edinburgh, Forres to Fife, Glasgow to the Borders and beyond covering a range of industry sectors with packaging, textiles, renewables, whisky and entertainment all recognised.
The winners were:
- Biomatrix Water Solutions Ltd – Adapting Scotland Award
- Renewable Parts Ltd – Refurbishment Centre – Circular Scotland Award
- Aberdeen Performing Arts – Engaging Scotland Award
- Diageo-Leven – Hydro Nation Scotland Award
- Intelligent Growth Solutions – Innovating Scotland Award
- ACS Clothing Ltd – Leadership Scotland Award
- TechnipFMC – Moving Scotland Award
- Outer Hebrides Local Energy Hub (OHLEH) – Partnership Scotland Award
- IES – Product Scotland Award
- Vegware – Service Scotland Award
- FINDRA – Small Business Scotland Award
The 2019 event marked twenty years of VIBES, which over the years has recognised 220 businesses for their commitment to sustainability within their sector.
To celebrate this milestone anniversary, a special ‘Best of VIBES’ award was presented to CMS Window Systems a former winner of the prestigious award for Management SME in 2015.
The company were recognised for continuously instigating environmental improvements and for pushing the market to higher specifications for heat loss and working with glass and profile manufacturers to increase the recycling content of new windows.
CMS were one of the first companies to remove all waste from the sites where they fit their products.
The waste is transported and sorted at their three sites for onward recycling. This labour intensive process helps to achieve impressive recycling rates and control recovered material quality.
The announcement of the winners follows a rigorous judging process which included a written application, three rounds of judging panels and a site visit for each of the 36 shortlisted businesses, to assess their environmental processes.
The variety of businesses awarded show that operating sustainably is an option for all, regardless of size, scale or sector.
There are many benefits to be enjoyed from embracing the economic opportunity of sustainability, with winners enjoying a range of associated positives including increased resource efficiency, resilience, competitiveness as well as a stronger working culture and implemented best practice in their daily activities.
Business Minister, Jamie Hepburn MSP, said:“There is a global climate emergency and we all need to be part of the solution. Scotland has by far the most ambitious and stringent climate legislation of any country in the world and business will play a critical role in the transition to a net-zero society.
“It is important that we recognise the business leaders who are committed to developing innovative, ambitious and environmentally sustainable solutions while seizing the economic opportunities our net-zero transition presents, and I am proud to have presented the ‘Best of VIBES’ award this year, helping celebrate VIBES’ 20th anniversary.”
Bob Downes, chair of SEPA and head of the VIBES judging panel, said:“The scale of the environmental challenge facing humanity, from climate change to plastics in our oceans, is enormous, with a real urgency to act.
“The most successful businesses in the future will be those that are not just compliant, but which are also low carbon, low material use, low water use and low waste, and which see environmental excellence as an opportunity.
“This is at the core of SEPA’s One Planet Prosperity regulatory strategy.
“It is very encouraging to see the diverse range of businesses, small and large, which are taking important steps to reduce their impact on the environment and which understand how environmental excellence can also benefit their bottom line.
“I would like to congratulate each of this year’s winning businesses and organisations, and hope that others will be inspired to follow in their footsteps.”
Winner of Best of VIBES award, Martin McCrimmon, Business Systems Director from CMS Window Systems, said: “We are very proud to receive this prestigious accolade which recognises our commitment to delivering environmental best practice.
“It is particularly special to be voted as the winner given the strength of the competition and the outstanding environmental innovations that they are delivering.
“Sustainability is at the heart of our business and drives every decision that we make as we recognise that it brings both economic and environmental benefits and contributes to a sustainable Scotland.”
Each of the 2019 VIBES – Scottish Environment Business Awards winners is now eligible to enter the next European Business Awards for the Environment (EBAE) which is open to winners and runners up of RSA Accredited award schemes. VIBES is the only Scottish based RSA Accredited award scheme.