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West Suffolk: ‘Hotties’ maker Bridgebrooke Energy turns up the heat in helping to reduce emissions

09:17 11 February 2014

Bridgebrooke Energy owner John Jardine with the firm's Suffolk Carbon Charter certificate.

Bridgebrooke Energy owner John Jardine with the firm's Suffolk Carbon Charter certificate.

A west Suffolk-based business launched in 2010 to take a lead in reducing greenhouse gas emissions is now supplying its biomass-based products to more than 400 retailers across the UK and beyond.

And Bridgebrooke Energy, from Risby, near Bury St Edmunds, which is a member of the EADT’s Future50 listing of up-and-coming businesses, has now joined the exclusive ranks of firms which have received a Gold award under the Suffolk Carbon Charter initiative.

As the producer of the Hotties brand of fuel logs, which are made from waste wood, Bridgebrooke is fundamentally an environmentally friendly business, but it decided to seek recognition of this under the carbon charter scheme.

Jointly run by Suffolk County Council and the Environment Agency as part of the Suffolk Climate Change Partnership and the Creating the Greeenest County initiative, the charter offers a Bronze award (for energy management), a Silver 
award (for energy reduction) and a Gold award (for community leadership).

Bridgebrooke, working in partnership with Groundwork (a community charity which aims to support green spaces and help households out of fuel poverty), applied through the East of England Co-op’s pathfinder support programme for locally sourced suppliers.

This programme is being supported equally by the East of England Co-op and Suffolk County Council and is run as part of a wide range of business support services available as part of the Greenest County initiative as supported by the Suffolk Climate Change Partnership.

Following an assessment, Bridgebrooke was granted the Suffolk Carbon Charter Gold award, identifying it as “an exemplar in low carbon management”.

Richard Smith, Suffolk County Council’s cabinet member for economic development, environment and planning, who presented the award, said: “I am delighted to award this accreditation to Bridgebrooke Energy.

“The Gold Charter is only awarded to companies that have achieved significant reductions in their carbon emissions, as well using their position to influence their communities, whether through their supply chain, customers or staff.

“Bridgebrooke have incorporated carbon saving measures into their business from day one of the company and we would like to congratulate them on this achievement, and on their highly commendable environmental commitment.”

Bridgebrooke, which last year also received a Bronze award in the Zero Waste Awards, run by run by letsrecycle.com and sponsored by SAICA NATUR and Wastecare, supplies its Hotties logs to customers across the UK and Europe.

Hotties can be used for open fires, wood burning stoves, fire pits and chimineas, and Bridgebrooke also produces a summer fuel range including charcoal for restaurants and the retail brand Barbies, for use on home barbecues,

The products are made from 100% recycled clean wood, with the supply process described as founder and chief executive John Jardine as “totally renewable”.

The products are manufactured at its own factory using an extruder machine, with the plant located alongside farm-based anaerobic digester which provides power for the factory as well as for drying its feedstock.

Mr Jardine, who is from a local farming family, set up Bridgebrooke following the sale of his previous business, the recycling and composting firm County Mulch, based at Creeting St Mary, near Ipswich, which he ran for more than 20 years until 2010.

The wood material used, such as sawdust, wood off-cuts from factories and joinery waste, is dried and compressed into logs which have only a 4% moisture content, so that their heat value is up to three times that of convention logs.

Bridgebrooke supplies more than 400 retailers, including garden centres, petrol forecourts, wood burner and stove shops, and fuel merchants, as well as selling direct to the public, including through an online shop at www.bridgebrookeenergy.co.uk

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