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Hanson UK launch Quarry Life Award 2018

Martin Crow

Fourth edition of company’s biennial biodiversity research competition gets under way in the UK

HANSON UK have launched the fourth round of their biennial biodiversity research competition, the Quarry Life Award.

The competition is run by Hanson’s parent company, HeidelbergCement, in 23 countries across the globe, offering academics and students from universities and further education institutions the chance to win up to £27,000 by finding new ideas for the conservation and promotion of biodiversity in quarries.

The fourth edition includes, for the first time, a category for community projects that educate about biodiversity in quarries or help the quarry to better connect with its neighbours. This new stream is open to everyone – individuals, students, schools and community groups – and includes a student class project.

Meanwhile, the research stream focuses on scientific projects that increase knowledge of mining ecology and lead to improved biodiversity, landscape or water management. It is aimed principally at academics, scientists and research groups. The categories cover biodiversity management, habitat and species research, and a section called ‘Beyond quarry borders’.

Seven Hanson sites are participating in the 2018 contest – the rock quarries at Forest Wood, near Llantrisant in Rhonda Cynon Taf; Coldstones, near Pateley Bridge in North Yorkshire, and Chipping Sodbury in South Gloucestershire; the cement limestone quarry at Ketton in Rutland; and the sand and gravel quarries at Barton-under-Needwood in Staffordshire, Needingworth in Cambridgeshire and Ripon in North Yorkshire.

The deadline for the submission of proposals is 20 November 2017, whereupon an independent panel of experts will select six projects for the research phase to be carried out between January and September next year.

The UK winners, who will be chosen by a national jury, will share a prize fund of £12,000 and go forward to the international competition with a chance to scoop the top prize of £27,000.

Martin Crow (pictured), Hanson’s senior sustainability manager, said: ‘Our aim is to encourage projects that can support or enhance the work we are already doing to improve biodiversity and the quality of restoration at our sites.

‘The award has increased dialogue with the academic community and NGOs, which, in turn, is helping to inform the development of biodiversity action plans at all our sites.’

Almost 400 project proposals from 22 countries were submitted for the 2016 award, with 95 projects selected for the research phase.

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