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Calor embarks on ecology project at Canvey Island Terminal after securing Platinum membership with the Essex Wildlife Trust

With its scenic views of the Kent coast and unique combination of landscapes from coastline to marshland, Canvey Island is a much-loved area in Essex. The Island is also home to one of Calor’s UK-based gas storage terminals, stretching over 85 acres of land, which as well as housing the gas terminal buildings and recognisable above ground gas storage tanks, features acres of grassland, marshlands, dikes and ponds.

Recognising the importance of nurturing and maintaining the biodiversity of this unique area, Calor has embarked on a large-scale ecology project. This project will see the company create a series of Eco-Zones around the site to improve habitats for the abundance of species that already make the site their home. It will also encourage lots of new wildlife into the area.

Building on Past Ecology Work

Calor’s ecology project follows on from a series of past initiatives the company has undertaken to support the environment. This has included the installation of bat boxes to provide suitable and safe areas for the animals as well as beehives, maintained and operated by a member of the Essex Beekeepers Association. With a variety of birds that frequent the area, Calor has also installed a number of owl nesting boxes to encourage the birds into the environment, as well as providing safe spaces for them to nest.

Furthermore, Calor has dedicated time to improving the way they maintain the trees on the site, and where possible, instead of being discarded, offcuts or felled trees are used to build habitat piles, creating natural and environmentally friendly habitats for a wide range of wildlife. Scrubland, grass and vegetation is also managed using hand tools and hand-operated machines to ensure minimal disturbance to wildlife.

Adding to the company’s ongoing work to improve the biodiversity of the site, Calor is delighted to have recently become a Platinum Member of the Essex Wildlife Trust, England’s leading conservation charity, committed to protecting wildlife and preserving what they call ‘areas of wonder’.

Looking to the future
Work for the current ecology project began in early 2021 with activity to manage vegetation and the creation of two on-site compost heaps which will act as egg-laying habitats for grass snakes. Other areas of the site including grasslands and areas of bare ground that have been restored to improve conditions, with rigorous searches to identify reptiles and amphibians taking place.

This summer the site will also undergo a formal land survey in order to map and characterise habitats across the wider Calor estate which will help to confirm botanical species, as well as searching for evidence of legally protected and notable species including Crested Newt’s, reptiles, birds, invertebrates, bats and other mammals on the site. The survey will not only create a habitat map but will also identify opportunities for further work to improve the sustainability and biodiversity of the site.

James Caird, Business Assurance and Support Manager at Calor’s Canvey Island Terminal, said:
“We appreciate just how unique our Canvey Island site is and the potential we have to develop the biodiversity across the 85 acre site through ecologically focused projects. We foresee that the plans we are implementing will not only protect and enhance the habitats for the current wildlife that calls this space home, but that the work we’re doing will also encourage new species into the area, further enhancing the net biodiversity.

“With a strong focus on sustainability at Calor and with ambitions to offer customers 100% renewable energy by 2040, we’re delighted that we’re able to take steps towards applying those same principles to improve our site for future generations.”

Grant Maton, Corporate Communications Officer at Essex Wildlife Trust, said: “The Trust is dedicated to protecting wildlife across the county through a range of conservation and education initiatives, as well as raising awareness through our discovery centres and campaigns that help to give wildlife a greater voice in our county.

“Canvey Island is a unique and diverse area and we’re pleased to support Calor, now one of our Platinum Members, as the company embarks on their project to safeguard the wide range of species that can already be found on their site. It’s brilliant to see that they’re improving and strengthening conditions to encourage further species to make Canvey Island their home in the future.”

Calor is dedicated to making more sustainable choices, developing sustainable fuels for the near future as well as currently offering renewable fuels such as BioLPG, an alternative to traditional LPG, which provides all of the same convenience of LPG, to their home energy and forklift truck customers. 

BioLPG is helping Calor’s customers hit their sustainability targets and reduce carbon emissions by up to 38%2 compared to oil. Not only do sustainable fuels like BioLPG show Calor’s commitment to a more sustainable future, but initiatives like this latest project at Canvey Island are testament to the many ways that the company is working to minimise its impact on the environment.