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Our decade of action

Sustainability is the driving force behind EMR's business strategy. As one of the world’s foremost waste recycling companies, our vision is to be the global leader in sustainable materials.

EMR is a progressive company, constantly striving to be a better business for clients, employees, communities and the environment. Our commitment to sustainability, as part of our environmental, social and governance (ESG) values, means clients now consider us a critical part of their closed-loop business.


Ambitious, meticulous planning and a readiness to confront challenges are integral to EMR’s approach to corporate sustainability. We continue to fulfil a fundamental role in the creation of a circular economy – a world without waste – and whilst recycling itself is an inherently environmentally driven activity, we know we can be even better.

We have developed a unique long-term strategy, Our Decade of Action, which sets us apart from our competitors.

As members of the UK’s Council for Sustainable Business we are committed to helping the UK government operationalise its 25 Year Environment Plan. We are environmental innovators in a traditional industry, demonstrating the economic case for sustainable business. We want to work closely with our customers to navigate these issues as part of our own Sustainable Business Strategy.

Global scale:

By demonstrating the most economical and environmentally advanced methods, we aim to achieve on a global scale:

  • The highest possible recycling rates;
  • The lowest waste generation rates per tonne of product produced (%);
  • The lowest greenhouse gas emissions per tonne (tCO2e/Tonne) of material produced.

So becoming:

  • The chosen partner for all clients on closed-loop material management;
  • Net carbon neutral by 2040.

How do we do this?

  • By continuing to develop and implement procedures to improve and more accurately measure and monitor the above key performance indicators;
  • By setting long-term targets (over decades) to specifically address these indicators;
  • By developing plans with each business area to meet these targets;
  • By building on our achievements so far. We have already procured almost 80% of the UK business electricity from renewable sources, which include solar, wind, water/hydroelectric, biomass (including biogas) and geothermal.

For every tonne of recycled metal used in the production of carbon steel, the steel industry saves an average of 1.67 tCO2e compared to production from ores. For stainless steel waste, this figure rises to 4.3 tCO2e per tonne of scrap.


Following the global trend for businesses to align themselves with firms who share their ESG goals, we regard the close partnerships we have with our customers as valuable.

At EMR, we add real benefit to our clients' ESG credentials, lowering their carbon emissions through our efficient and progressive methods of waste recycling.


  • We recognise our industry's heavy reliance on machinery and transportation and so continually invest in new technology and systems to minimise our own carbon emissions. We keep vehicles off the road by using rail and water wherever we can.
  • EMR is supporting the UK government's environmental targets by aiming to be net carbon neutral across Scope 2 GHG emissions* by 2030 and committing to increasing energy productivity by 10%. We also aim to achieve net-zero carbon across our electrical energy supplies.
  • Due to the sheer scale and capability of our operations, the amount of metal and plastic we recycle already has a hugely positive impact on CO2 emissions, compared with the manufacture of virgin goods.

In 2019, our UK operations saved 4.5M tonnes of CO2, comparable to a large UK city with population of c700,000 (similar to a city the size of Glasgow!).


  • Communities — We recognise our vital role in society and within our communities: we don’t just talk about recycling; we make it happen! By supporting local causes, volunteering and investing in a local workforce, we deliver social value through education, awareness and empowerment programmes. Find out more about our Social Responsibility here.
  • Our people — A responsible working culture forms the bedrock of EMR's success. We attract the best people in the industry due to our hard-earned reputation for being a sustainable, progressive company and a global authority on waste recycling.

    Fostering a culture of visible and accessible leadership, great career prospects and a commitment to training and mentoring, EMR employs talented people who care about the business and the jobs they do. We empower them to innovate, whilst embracing change and the opportunities it can afford.

Find out more about our culture and values here.


  • Safety, health, environmental standards and quality are the cornerstones of EMR's sustainable approach, as we endeavour to protect our people, customers, suppliers and communities. Our internal systems and processes are designed to operate to OHSAS18001 for safety, ISO 14001 for environmental responsibilities and ISO 9001 for quality.
*Scope 2 – Indirect Emissions from electricity purchased and used by the organisation. Emissions are created during the production of the energy and eventually used by the organisation.


Contact our Media Team to find out more about our ESG values and Sustainable Business Strategy.