The British Midlands

Business sectors within the region







Medical Devices

Financial & Business Services


Environmental Technology

Food & Drink

Advanced Materials

Building Technologies

Other Sectors

Environmental Technology


  • This sector is growing rapidly, and businesses in the British Midlands benefit from a strong skills base
  • There are numerous dedicated centres for academic research
  • The British Midlands leads the implementation of environmental regulations

The British Midlands' environmental technologies sector is growing rapidly, with a wide range of manufacturing capability, technology companies, equipment suppliers and service providers.

The region’s strength in this sector is twofold: as well as boasting excellent goods and services, it is also at the forefront of academic research and development.

Several companies and research centres developing fuel-cell technologies and products are based here

– including Rolls-Royce Fuel Cells Systems Ltd and CENEX, the Centre of Excellence in Low Carbon and Fuel-Cell Technologies.

Many local universities have related research programmes and centres including:

  • The University of Warwick’s Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG) advises manufacturers so a high percentage of the end product can be recycled
  • The University of Birmingham’s Division of Environmental Health and Risk Management is the UK’s top centre for air pollution research
  • The University of Northampton, a world-leading centre of excellence in waste management education, houses the largest waste management library in Europe
  • Loughborough University’s Centre for Renewable Energy Systems Technology (CREST) provides substantial and benign energy options for present and future generations.

Design expertise and manufacturing skills mean wind power is a particular regional strength.

This was demonstrated by an initiative to develop a wind turbine supply chain using Midlands manufacturing companies. See for more information.

The British Midlands leads the implementation of environmental regulations, for example Sims Recycling Solutions has invested in de-pollution technology to develop best practice ahead of the European End of Life Vehicles Legislation 2007.

The UK Government has set targets that require commerce, industry, local authorities and householders to minimise waste, reduce landfill and increase recycling and composting levels, creating significant new opportunities. In Leicester, HESE Umwelt of Germany has established a US$53 milllion biomass plant, transforming household waste into biogas and compost. This will enable the UK to reduce the amount of waste going to landfill sites.

Also, Birmingham-based International Synergies Ltd is managing the National Industrial Symbiosis Programme (NISP) – the first industrial symbiosis initiative in the world to be launched on a national scale.

Finally, Sherwood Energy Village is the spectacular transformation of a former Nottinghamshire colliery into a mixed-use development.  The Village has the UK’s largest system of sustainable urban drainage which conserves surface water and improves biodiversity. See for more information.