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A Wakefield shopping centre has won a world award for its raft of green projects, flying the flag for the UK and Yorkshire.

Zero waste to landfill, removal of chemicals and a waste separation scheme has seen Trinity Walk shopping centre win a Green World Award which will be presented at a major international ceremony in Vietnam.

It’s the first time a shopping centre has ever won a world award by applying directly, according to organisers, The Green Organisation.

The global awards are there to recognise environmental best practice by companies, organisations and governments and previous winners of awards have included Siemens, Toshiba, BAE Systems, Turkey’s Ministry of Environment and Abu Dhabi’s Minister of Interior.

The shopping centre has also been invited to collect their global award from the Houses of Parliament on November 25 when it becomes a formal Green Ambassador for The Green Organisation.

The centre, which opened in May 2011, has bagged an award and will find out whether it’s a gold, silver or bronze level in Vietnam on Monday, September 30.

Tiernan Barrett, Operations Manager of Trinity Walk, said: “It’s easy to do the minimum, but it’s right to do more – much more. We started this journey back in 2016, but it’s really taken off in the last two years. The team has made it happen and that team is made up of staff here at the centre, the retailers in our stores and our waste collection partners, SWRnewstar.

“The combined effort has seen us continue to ensure not a gram of waste goes to landfill, no chemicals are used in any of our cleaning except lime scale remover in toilets, more waste than ever is separated on site and there’s been a massive reduction in electricity consumption thanks to new lamps, timers and sensors.

“To some people it can sound a bit dry or boring, but when you look at the positive impact it has on our carbon footprint – and on the environment around us – it starts to make sense. If everyone tries to make a difference it adds up. Yes, it has a benefit commercially as we are spending less on energy, but the benefits to the environment are the real results.”

Some of Trinity Walk’s successes include:

•Continued zero waste to landfill

•Increased onsite waste separation by more than 5% annually

•Reduced waste going to Material Recovery Facility by at least 10% annually

•Reduced electricity consumption by 10% almost yearly

•Improved staff/tenant environmental awareness and actions

•Replaced cleaning chemicals with Aqueous Ozone

•Reduce cleaning chemical expenditure

•Site staff trained in pollution incident responses

•Raise environmental awareness in community through school trips

The judges look at a range of criteria when assessing applications including the environmental benefits, innovation, commitment, social benefits, economic benefits, quantitative evidence of impact, future further development plans and possible adoption by others.

Based in the heart of Wakefield city centre, Trinity Walk opened its doors in May 2011 – one of the first centres in Europe completed after the financial crash. Home to around 70 stores, it covers 560,000 sq ft including a 1,000 space car park. Its unique design makes it an open air hybrid shopping centre/high street to integrate it into the city centre. The centre continues to buck the national trend in terms of both occupancy and footfall.

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