Environment & Sustainability: An Update from Tresco
Here on Tresco we’re always working to streamline and improve our policies surrounding sustainability and environmental stewardship. As an island, we face unique challenges when it comes to managing our waste, recycling, and making our freight and transport links as environmentally sound as they can possibly be.
Here’s an overview of four projects we’re currently involved in:
Food Waste Management
We’ve recently installed a new biodigester in our waste processing shed. If you’ve stayed with us before, you’ll know that we separate our waste religiously, including our food waste which constitues about 24% of the island's total waste.
This new piece of equipment will allow us to reduce the island’s food waste volume by about 80%, turning it into safe, compostable material. The output (pictured above) becomes a nutrient-rich soil enhancer when composted with woodier ingredients, which is then used as fertiliser in the Abbey Garden and woodland areas.
This process is expected to save about 160 tonnes of methane gas per annum mitigating our contribution to climate change.
We work hard to keep traffic on the island to a minimum, and a key strand of our active involvement in the Smart Islands Project has centred on the increased adoption of electric vehicles.
From next year, all of our for-hire golf buggies will be electric, and we will be introducing four electric buses on the island to further decrease traffic and transport our arrivals and departures. We have also recently purchased 25 electric bikes, designed to provide a non-vehicle option for guests with reduced mobility.
New helicopter link: Penzance to Tresco
Environmental considerations have been at the heart of the development of this new transport route, launching in March 2020. The Penzance heliport terminal is carbon negative, and will be serviced by an electric shuttle bus running between the railway station and the terminal itself.
The helicopter model used will be the Augusta Westland AW 139, operated by Penzance Helicopters – this model is carbon fibre based, producing 20% less greenhouse gas than the metal model.
We’re a core funder of the Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust, and are always looking for creative ways to support the charity. Recently we worked together to arrange the first guided low tide wildlife walk between Tresco & Bryher. This was a huge success, raising funds for the Wildlife Trust and receiving fantastic feedback from participants.
We’re currently planning more events for next year which will include new additions such as after-dark bat walks as well as the low tide outings becoming a more regular feature.
Earlier this year we were delighted to provide some support to the Clean Ocean Sailing team during their time on the islands. This fantastic initiative sees a dedicated team sail across from Cornwall, mooring up on Scilly and collecting waste plastic from the uninhabited islands in the archipelago.
On their most recent voyage, 35 dumpee bags of plastic detritus were removed, from tiny shards of micro-plastic to a large fibreglass hull deteriorating on the shores of Tean island, assisted by our marine harbour team.
Clean Ocean Sailing is currently fundraising for a future Scilly voyage – please show your support here if you can.