Former Kier CEO Paul Sheffield joins Laing ORourke
Laing O’Rourke has announced the appointment of Paul Sheffield as Managing Director of the Group’s Europe Hub, covering operations in Canada, United Kingdom and the Middle East, replacing Paul Robinson.
In his new role starting October 2014, Sheffield will have executive responsibility for leading the development and delivery of the Group’s growth agenda in what it describes as core markets. He will also serve on the Laing O’Rourke Group Executive Committee.
He joins the company following a 31-year career with Kier Group, where he most recently he served as Chief Executive Officer, stepping down in June 2014 following a successful four-year tenure overseeing a significant expansion in their activities, including the successful acquisition of May Gurney.
At the time, Sheffield suggested he may seek a role outside of the construction industry, saying it would be “exciting to try your skills at something completely different”.
He is a Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers and has an honorary doctorate from the University of Surrey in recognition of the major contributions he has made to the civil engineering profession.
He is an inaugural member of the UK Government’s Construction Industrial Strategy Advisory Council (CISAC), set up by the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) to drive a long term strategy for growth in construction across the UK.
Commenting on the appointment, Group Chief Executive of Laing O’Rourke, Anna Stewart, to whom Sheffield will report on the Executive Committee, said: "During this period of industry transformation, there is no better person to lead the development of Laing O’Rourke’s Europe Hub than Paul Sheffield. He is a proven leader with hard core engineering and construction skills, industry vision and the ability to unite people behind that vision.
“His passion for how the construction industry can positively influence the world around us is exactly what Laing O’Rourke needs as we enter our next chapter of innovation and growth.
"With a broad executive remit, he will spearhead the Europe Hub strategy to get closer to our customers by delivering the inherent benefits of our unique business offering. As one of the few remaining civil engineers to lead a major international contractor, his experience of successfully running complex businesses will greatly benefit the Group as we evolve our strategic focus towards expanding the opportunities to deploy our Design for Manufacture and Assembly approach."
Commenting on his new role, Sheffield said: "To make real progress towards the ambitions set out last year in the UK Government’s industrial strategy for construction in 2025, businesses need to have the courage to find ways of doing things differently. The 30 percent time and 50 percent cost savings targeted will not be achieved by incremental change alone.
“Recent investments in innovation, manufacturing and engineering excellence at Laing O'Rourke have shown that they have the ambition to lead this change agenda and to drive it at a pace that I have not seen in any other business in the industry. I am delighted to have been given the opportunity to be at the forefront of this paradigm shift in the way our industry works, and am very much looking forward to meeting the team and getting started in October."
Chairman of Laing O’Rourke, Ray O’Rourke added: "We are absolutely delighted that Paul has agreed to join us and lead the development of our international businesses across the Europe hub. He is one of the leading figures in our industry and has an outstanding reputation in business development, corporate leadership and construction delivery.
“The opportunity ahead for Laing O’Rourke is huge, but in order to seize it, we must have clear focus, move at pace, while continually innovating and transforming our customer offering. Paul possesses the skills and experience to help make this happen and the Board is looking forward to working with him."
Environment Agency clamps down on plastic films and wraps
Businesses in the waste and construction industries must ensure they deal with waste plastic properly to stop illegal exports, the Environment Agency (EA) has warned.
The warning comes as the Agency is increasingly aware of plastic film and wrap from the construction and demolition sector being illegally exported.
Exports are frequently being classified as ‘green list’ waste of low risk to the environment, but are often contaminated with materials such as mud, sand, bricks and wood, posing a risk to the environment and human health overseas, and undermining legitimate businesses in the UK seeking to recover such waste properly.
During the last year, the EA has intercepted shipments to prevent the illegal export of this material on numerous occasions. The Agency inspected 1,889 containers at English ports and stopped 463 being illegally exported. This, combined with regulatory intervention upstream at sites, prevented the illegal export of nearly 23,000 tonnes of waste.
Those convicted of illegally exporting waste face an unlimited fine and a two-year jail sentence. But construction firms could also face enforcement action if contaminated construction and demolition waste plastic is illegally exported.
Malcolm Lythgo, Head of Waste Regulation at the Environment Agency, said it is seeing a marked increase in the number of highly contaminated plastic film and wrap shipments from the construction and demolition industry being stopped by officers.
“I would strongly urge businesses to observe their legal responsibility to ensure waste is processed appropriately, so we can protect human health and the environment now and for future generations. It’s not enough just to give your waste to someone else - even a registered carrier. You need to know where your waste will ultimately end up to know it’s been handled properly. We want to work constructively with those in the construction and waste sectors so they can operate compliantly, but we will not hesitate to clamp down on those who show disregard for the environment and the law.”
There are a number of simple, practical steps that businesses can take to ensure that C&D site waste is handled legally.
Construction businesses should check what’s in their waste
- Different waste types need different treatments and so must be correctly categorised to ensure it goes to a site that is authorised to handle it safely. Businesses can also check if their waste is hazardous as different rules might apply.
- If you are removing the waste yourself, you must be a registered waste carrier- registration can be carried out here. When a waste collector is transporting your site waste, you must check they have a waste carrier’s licence from the EA.
- You must also check that the end destination site any waste is taken to is permitted to accept it and has the right authorisations in place. Keep a record of any waste that leaves your site by completing a waste transfer note or a consignment note for hazardous waste which record what and how much waste you have handed over and where it is going.
Waste management industry must adhere to export controls
- Contaminated C&D waste plastic - including low-density polyethylene (LDPE) wrap and film - must be exported with prior consent from the EA as well as competent authorities in transit and destination countries.
- Those involved in the export of such waste must ensure that it meets the requirements set under the relevant export controls, such as being almost free-from contamination; the destination sites are appropriately licensed to receive and treat the waste; and waste is correctly managed once received.
The EA will continue to actively target those who export contaminated C&D plastic waste illegally, including any accredited packaging exporters who issue Packaging Waste Export Recovery Notes (PERNs) against such material in breach of their Conditions of Accreditation.
Businesses involved in the shipment of waste are required to take all necessary steps to ensure the waste they ship is managed in an environmentally sound manner throughout its shipment and during its recycling.
Anyone with information regarding the illegal export of waste including C&D waste plastics can contact the EA’s Illegal Waste Exports team at: [email protected] or anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or via their website