Our members are… Green

World Environment Day is the United Nations’ principal vehicle for encouraging worldwide awareness and action for the environment. The theme this year is “Seven Billion Dreams. One Planet. Consume with Care.” The well-being of humanity, the environment and the functioning of the economy ultimately depend on the responsible management of the planet’s natural resources. And yet, evidence is building that people are consuming far more natural resources than the planet can provide. Consuming with care means living within planetary boundaries to ensure a healthy future where our dreams can be realised. Human prosperity need not cost the earth. Living sustainably is about doing more and better with less. It is about knowing that rising rates of natural resource use and the environmental impacts that occur are not a necessary by-product of economic growth. (Read more at www.unep.org).

Co-operative & Community Finance has always been committed to caring for the environment. Over the last 40 years, we’ve lent to hundreds of businesses that are working hard to develop a more sustainable, compassionate approach to people and planet. This includes numerous green co-ops – from radical recyclers to super solar panel installers, brilliant biomass boiler engineers to wonderful waste wood collectors. So, to celebrate World Environment Day, we’ve rounded up five of our greenest members to showcase some of the great work co-ops all over the UK are doing for the environment.

Our members are… Green

Somerset Wood Recycling

Somerset Wood Recycling is a social enterprise based in Weston-super-Mare, it has 12 employees and 25 volunteers. The members collect waste wood from businesses, building sites and domestic premises; at least 80% is reused – half is sold as timber for DIY, and much of the rest is used to make products for sale. Somerset Wood provides opportunities for training and volunteering for disadvantaged people.

More about Somerset Wood Recycling >>>>

Our members are… Green


R-ECO is a workers’ co-operative with branches in Cornwall, Bristol and Oxford, that designs and installs bespoke renewable energy systems for domestic, commercial and community clients. The co-op was founded in 2008 with the aim of bringing a co-operative approach to the renewables market. The co-operative is passionate about driving the renewable energy industry forward. R-ECO is a pioneer of solar farms in the country, and won a business innovation award in 2010.

More about R-Eco >>>>

Our members are… Green

Biomass Energy Co-operative

Biomass Energy is a renewable energy workers’ co-operative, based in North West England. They are accomplished installers of biomass and multifuel boilers, specialising in community buildings. The co-op is committed to promoting green, sustainable energy solutions in a fair and commercially attractive way, so that as many people as possible can benefit. The members have a strong background in co-operation, community enterprise, energy efficiency and cost cutting in a number of industries including the church, youth and community groups, construction and the motor industry. Biomass Energy provides support and advice to community groups, sports organisations and businesses, helping them to consume energy more efficiently and reduce their bills. This support ranges from training staff, through to the development of energy saving equipment.

More about Biomass Energy Co-operative >>>>

Our members are… Green

Oxford Wood Recycling

Oxford Wood Recycling is a successful social enterprise based in Oxfordshire, which has been trading since 2005 and steadily grown over the last 10 years. The business aims to increase the amount of wood being reused and recycled rather than being sent to landfill sites, while providing employment and work experience for disadvantaged people. It operates a collection service in a 30 mile radius of its base in Didcot. The team collects waste wood, timber and pallets from construction sites, business premises, and universities/colleges – which is then sorted and de-nailed at their warehouse. About a fifth of the timber is stored for re-use and the remainder is taken to a licensed recycler for shredding, with the end use mainly being energy generation. Re-useable timber is sold for DIY or sawn and bagged for firewood.

More about Oxford Wood Recycling >>>>

Our members are… Green


Ecosulis is the UK’s most experienced ecological consultancy and contractor. Its services include ecological consultancy, countryside management, environmental impact assessment, research and development; implementing practical solutions that benefit both people and wildlife. With a Head Office in Bath and regional offices in Exeter, Monmouth, London and Chester, Ecosulis is able to provide ecological and contracting services throughout the UK. The business has been trading since 1990, and became employee-owned in 2007.

More about Ecosulis >>>>

Our members are… Green