The Environmental Services Association (ESA) has announced that Gavin Graveson, executive vice president for Veolia UK and Ireland, will be its new chairman.
Mr Graveson will be taking over from previous chairman, Phil Piddington, for the next two years.
The handover took place at the Association’s annual general meeting earlier today (27 November).
The role will see Mr Graveson continuing to work with Defra and other stakeholders on the detail behind the Resources and Waste Strategy, with the next round of consultations due in spring 2021.
The ESA said that Mr Graveson will also work towards developing a new strategy for driving higher health and safety standards in the industry and setting a “gold standard” for energy from waste (EfW) operations.
Commenting after his appointment, Mr Graveson said: “I would like to thank Phil for his commitment and achievements as well as the resilience shown by ESA members as key workers during the pandemic. The industry stands poised to play a vital role in decarbonising the UK, ahead of COP26 next year.
“The public are really engaged on the topic of carbon and climate change, and we should be proud of what we’ve done to cut emissions. But we can also do more, and I’m excited by the work the recently created ESA Climate Change Working Group are doing, and will look
to drive this agenda forward to build a better, more circular and sustainable future.”
Mr Piddington, who recently stepped down from his chief executive role at Viridor, said it has been a “fascinating” period to be chair and said the ESA has done a good job in liaising with government during his tenure.
“I would like to thank the other board members, the ESA officer team and all the other members involved and welcome Gavin as the organisation’s new chair”
He said: “I think the organisation has been very successful at talking to government, and other stakeholders like the EA and HSE, to share our collective experience and make sure the sector’s voice has been heard – which we can see largely reflected in the direction of travel for the Resources and Waste Strategy.”
Mr Piddington added: “I would like to thank the other board members, the ESA officer team and all the other members involved in the ESA’s working groups and to welcome Gavin as the organisation’s new chair. I wish him well and know he’ll tirelessly drive delivery of the ESA’s strategic priorities on behalf of all of us.”
The ESA’s executive director, Jacob Hayler, said he looks forward to working with Mr Graveson to deliver the association’s organisational strategy, “as ESA members continue to gear up for the biggest policy shake-up in a generation.”