MP Bob Seely has pledged to support a pioneering local environmental business that is exporting its products and expertise across the UK and the world.
Bob said he would undertake a number of steps to promote the work of ARC Biodiversity and Climate (ABC), the Sandown-based team that is breaking new ground in its work to create better environments for people and wildlife.
During a visit to the company’s HQ, Bob learned how the team’s cross-discipline projects for people and nature spread from the Kent coast to the Humber ports and to overseas, winning industry awards for its work on boosting biodiversity.
The ABC team highlighted its Shaping Better Places standard, its influence on the environmental and social strategy and delivery of both corporate and community development, and how it is currently being used to improve conditions for wildlife and for people in commercial and industrial sites in London, Birmingham, Bristol and Portsmouth.
The MP learned how Shaping Better Places is closely linked to the United Nations Sustainability Goals for 2030 and has at its heart the Island’s designation as a UNESCO World Biosphere in 2019. He also saw the research and design studio at which some of ARC’s unique products that provide ‘built habitats’ for the construction industry, are prototyped and tested in collaboration with universities across the UK.
“ARC is one of those hidden gems that flourish on the Island – a world leader in what it does,” Bob said.
“It is making a real difference not only in developing solutions to the environmental issues we all face but in exporting them across the UK and further afield. It was fascinating to see how expertise in ecology and landscape, art and science have combined to create products that can transform our coastal infrastructure and bring biodiversity to the built environment.
“The Island should be proud of companies like ARC. They are clearly doing a great job and I am very happy to undertake some tasks they believe would help them to continue to develop.
“For example, I will be looking for funding opportunities to support the wider work they do, and I will look to raise their profile, particularly among parliamentary colleagues.
“We share a common agenda which is to increase the number of green jobs on the Island and we both want to see the dinosaur artefacts we have here preserved and protected.”
Nigel George, who heads up Artecology said: “We have had great success with the Vertipool, a retrofit textured artificial rockpool that can be added to seawalls, ports, marinas and similar infrastructure to help marine wildlife colonise and spread where sea-level rise is otherwise reducing intertidal habitats.
“By working closely with universities, particularly Bournemouth, we have benefitted from a robust scientific evaluation of our ideas, and have been able to provide new opportunities for young engineers and biologists to advance thinking and practice in ways that are going to become absolutely essential in our changing environment.”
Nigel explained that Vertipools were now in use across the UK, Ireland, northern France, Gibraltar and are being commissioned for new coastal defence projects in New Zealand!