24th November 2011: As winter approaches, 150,000 honey bees are preparing to colonise in six hives recently located at CEMEX UK Taffs Well quarry near Cardiff, South Wales. The 60 hectare quarry site, with Special Area of Conservation status, provides a perfect environment for the bees with its extensive beech woodland and wide variety of flora and fauna in the woods and on the restored rock benches.
The siting of these valuable hives will help increase the biodiversity of the quarry site and local area by enhancing plant and wildlife as well as helping, in a small way, to arrest the recent decline of the bee population in the UK.
The hives belong to and are managed by local resident Elaine Spence who originally was trying to find a good location for just one hive, but found somewhere for all six. "Pollinating insects, including honey bees are vital for our natural environment and its biodiversity. It is also estimated they pollinate up to a third of all our food and pollinators, worth £430 million per year to British agriculture*. Taffs Well quarry is an excellent site for the hives as it has plenty of space with available 'food' for the bees."
In 2010 CEMEX UK, in conjunction with the RSPB, launched its Biodiversity strategy to enrich nature across its operations. This included not only enhancing projects, such as the siting of the bee hives but the creation and maintenance of 1,000 hectares of priority habitats by 2020 and represents a major investment in protecting and promoting nature and wildlife.
Our RSPB Biodiversity Advisor, Dr Sam Tarrant says "We can all help pollinating insects, by providing a range of flowering plants and shrubs in our gardens, and leaving dead wood on plants or laying on the floor to provide nesting places.
" We have a responsibility to balance the impact of our business as a major building materials supplier with the precious ecosystems that are all around us. The bees will make a valuable contribution to the biodiversity at Taffs Well and the surrounding landscape,"
Notes to editors:
- For further information and photographs contact Elizabeth Young t. 01932 583214 e. Elizabeth.firstname.lastname@example.org. Photographs can be seen on Flickr
- CEMEX is a global building solutions company and leading supplier of cement, ready-mixed concrete and aggregates. In the UK, CEMEX also produces asphalt, and has a significant share of the concrete-block paving and concrete block sectors. Additionally, the company is the leading supplier of concrete sleepers to the rail industry and a supplier of PFA cement additives. CEMEX has a national supply network in the UK with over 450 locations, to ensure that quality building materials are available to customers locally. For more information, see www.CEMEX.co.uk, www.CEMEX.com
- Taffs Well Quarry provides approximately 1 million tonnes of limestone every year which is used within a 10 mile radius for building and construction projects such as the M4 motorway and the new Cardiff shopping complex.
- Pollinators are worth £430 million per year to British agriculture. Citation - UK National Ecosystem Assessment (UK NEA) (http://uknea.unep-wcmc.org/ )