Putting Sustainability at the Top of Our Agenda

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For many CEOs, sustainability and the environment are two words they believe add up to one – cost. At ACS&T, however, we have embraced sustainability and the results prove quite the opposite. Taking just one example of the ACS&T approach:


Since 2014 the company has been committed to switching to LED lighting across all its sites. The roll out continues but the results so far are impressive. Not only do we save power for lighting, but most importantly we take the heat out of the chamber that existed with the older lighting system.

Another example of using innovation to reduce our CO2 footprint, is the acquisition of plug- in hybrid cars to fulfil our goals to become a more conscious company that cares for the environment. Trailing a plug-in hybrid has shown Malcolm Johnstone, MD of ACS&T, that driving styles have to be altered to gain maximum efficiency and environmental benefit.


“Fuel savings can be achieved through plug-in electric charging. But to achieve high MPG figures, the key is always to manage the electric and petrol engine selection to fit the traffic conditions and monitor constant engine and charging performance. Concentration is key and driving such cars are a challenge”.

However, lower emissions and reduced impact on the environment are evident. The trial has resulted in Company car policy being changed to encourage further roll-out to all company car users. The same theme of sustainability and protection of the environment extends to ACS&T’s multiple site cold storage facilities. Since the founding of the firm in 1921, ACS&T has always insisted on ammonia coolants in all its refrigeration.

Ammonia was chosen because it is a low-cost natural refrigerant. While it is not only cheaper than HALO carbons, it also has a better co-efficiency of performance; it is 10% more efficient than other refrigerants and uses less electricity. Nowadays ammonia is recognised as an environmentally friendly refrigerant on both a global warming potential (GWP) and a ozone depletion potential (ODP) basis. Other gases have been phased out because they deplete the ozone layer and contribute to global warming.

ACS&T has demonstrated the commercial effectiveness of putting sustainability and the environment at the top of the agenda. This is something that is important to our customers as well as us and has become one of the factors potential customers will examine when considering whom to appoint. Overall, sustainability and a strong concern for the environment are not only benefitting ACS&T’s internal costs, they also make strong commercial sense. Malcolm Johnstone states;


“I am fortunate that I can call on experts within ACS&T who guide us to our commercial and sustainability goals and see our customers also using this to meet their environmental and marketing objectives as well”.

Every day, another business – perhaps a potential ACS&T customer – has an ‘LED’ light bulb moment and puts sustainability on their “to-do” list.

At ACS&T it is a commitment that is already driving our commercial success.

Our 2021 Annual Report is now available.