Committing to be a good company has a lot of benefits across a lot of areas, but real commitment to wholesale environmental goals comes at a cost.
Some mega-companies may claim spotless environmental credentials, but scratch a little under the surface and you may find them putting price before principle – even if it is one-removed down the supply chain. The truth is, if every company truly committed to deliver environmental change for good – it would simply start to happen. But like any relationship – it’s complicated.
Tratos is one of the truly committed. Every one of its systems and processes is answerable to regular, independent inspection to ensure it stays on the side of good. And it’s a regimen that is welcomed. Because the cable innovator is BASEC IS4001 accredited it stepped into the environmental spotlight and has no intention of moving. Its independently audited commitment runs from waste management and factory practices to substances disposal, recycling and more.
So serious is Tratos about keeping its environmental credentials green and clean, it chases down the same values and practices through its supply chain. While it costs money to always act responsibly, there are clients who are aligned with the thinking and the delivery – but imagine how much faster the end goal would be reached if everyone was pulling in the same direction.
Tratos Director Neil Ancell has had his hand on the company’s environment rudder for some years. He says Tratos is one of those striving to meet and exceed standards every single day. As Brexit makes ready to land, Mr Ancell considered the environmental consequences of a new and separate identity for the UK.
“The UK is heavily regulated. That has underpinned UK plc and with it the knowledge that the United Kingdom’s products are high quality, safe and reliable. The problem is, not all of the rest of the world operates in the same way – or has the same values. And in some ways, given cost is king for some companies, it’s easy to see why developing countries proceed as they do. Staying environmentally compliant costs in both money and manpower.
“As far as Europe is concerned, British products had to comply with the market’s domestic environmental standards, and of course UK businesses have done.”
“But those opportunities for the big companies to continue to source the cheapest labour or imported materials with poor environmental practices will continue to be a concern. Clearly, a lot of the big players are waiting to find out how a deal or no deal will go – and the impact of tariffs – before awarding tenders to contractors. Some British companies buy huge levels of component parts for their business from countries with the least protected and policed practices. I call these Deep Sea Imports, long haul items that are brought in with huge environmental costs that could be avoided and some with human costs – from child labour to employees sleeping under machines at night – that should never even be considered.
“Bigger European companies are going to want a deal. It’s in their interests to stay competitive in the UK and import tariffs would finish their ambitions for a very lucrative market.
“That we don’t compromise is something to be proud of. While cost is king, children will be working in factories and workforces sleeping in hazardous environments. How do we make a level playing field? We dethrone cost as king. Instead, we agree that there is a cost to us looking after people, the planet and business. Once everyone changes their mindset to see quality, performance and safety as the over-riding goal, then there is a level playing field for great companies to become good and for hard-pressed businesses to re-think their operations – because they’re not having to scratch for wafer-thin margins.”
“Tratos recognises we have to keep pushing. We want other businesses to do the same. This matters. We take clean water and sanitation for granted. We work and then we leave at the end of our shift. This will remain an uphill battle, we have to play by the rules but we also have to lead by example.”
“Tratos has a massive social conscience. It wants to build the right legacy for the environment, for employees, for the communities they call home and help the businesses it supplies to get closer to shared goals.”
Tratos’ EMS (Environmental Management System) procedures determine the company’s manufacturing sites at Knowsley in the UK and Pieve Santo Stefano and Catania in Italy.
Environmental aspects were identified and evaluated as part of the SCEEMAS’ funded EMS development as early as 1997 and 1998. Tratos’ environmental management system is audited, approved and regularly inspected by independent, international authorities: BASEC (UK) and AENOR-IQNET (E), in accordance with ISO 14001 across production, raw materials purchasing, design and final test.
The company’s Environmental Policy, based on its Environmental Review, commits to legislative compliance and continuous improvement in environmental performance fulfilled through an Environmental Programme. Tratos aims to work closely with customers to find better, more environmentally friendly solutions to their challenges.
Tratos believes ethical business conduct is a condition of a company’s success. With a strong environmental policy in place it continues to move toward greener cable solutions, such as its cables without halogens and Tratos-Green – made using purely hydroelectric energy. Tratos Cavi has been using clean renewable energy from its own hydroelectric plant since 1980.
All Tratos’ manufacturing facilities have been awarded ISO 14001 certification for their Environmental Management Systems. Tratos is fully committed to provide protection both for people working with its cables, – and for the environment.
TRATOS is accredited to BS EN ISO 9001.