20 October 2019
Installation of Green Roof Using Sedum Plants On Steenbergs Warehouse
The natural world is in crisis. What is Steenbergs doing about it? We've created a wildlife corridor and planted a sedum roof.
The natural world is in crisis. There is a biodiversity emergency. Humanity’s impact on nature is destroying species at a scary pace – rainforests cut down, growth in intensive farming and cities, population growth. Growth, growth, growth.
But what can we do about it? What are we doing about it at Steenbergs?
We’ve been growing plants – installation of a sedum roof at #11 and creation of a wildlife corridor beside #6.
But first, the biggest things that we are doing are in Steenbergs’ DNA (I will expand on these commitments in later blogs):
- We only sell plant-based products. Steenbergs is vegetarian and vegan.
- We are primarily an organic business, selling mainly organically farmed products. This is backed up by most of our suppliers, also, being Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance or Ecocert Fairtrade certified. As far as possible, we want our suppliers, also, to practice extensive rather than intensive farming – we see intensive farming as the greatest threat to species, perhaps more so even than agrochemicals.
- We are committed to reducing our carbon footprint. Climate change is the biggest global threat to biodiversity, greater in the long term than land use changes. So, we have recently changed our lighting over to LED and installed more motion sensors.
- We are committed to getting plastic out of our business.
These maybe our biggest contributions to halting biodiversity loss. But we also want to make a positive contribution ourselves, so we are starting with some simple changes – and looking at bigger ones for the future that we will talk about when they have been worked through.
While Steenbergs is located on a classic business park, a blot of concrete and steel, we have done two things this year (2019):
- We requested that the thin strip beside our #6 factory only be cut once a year to enable a wildlife corridor to be created alongside the small beck that runs by us. We have also planted it with wildflowers that hopefully will raise their shoots next year.
- We have placed trays of sedum on one of our flatter roofs for a green roof on Steenbergs #11 warehouse. We bought ours direct from Ecogrid. Sedum is a succulent plant that captures some carbon and filters out some pollution, retains between 30 – 80% of rainfall and acts as an insulator, so reducing energy loss.
Insects love sedum. Bees and butterflies are the insects that enjoy sedum the most. Ladybirds are also found on sedum. All of these are good pollinators and offer a food source to birds.
It may seem a token effort. But naysayers can always find reasons not to do things. And we see these two small projects as positive steps on this long path to rebuilding the natural world.