A CHEMICAL company has launched an ambitious project to develop its own water supply.

Airedale Chemical drilled a 20-metre-deep borehole in the grounds of its Cross Hills site to test the quality of the water.

And following the success of the procedure, the firm will now use the resource in its chemical processing works.

The aim is for the business to become fully water self-sufficient by the end of this year.

Airedale Chemical says the initiative will both help the environment and cut running costs.

Leading the project is the company’s operations director, Daniel Fox.

He said: “As a chemical company we take our environmental responsibilities very seriously, so when the opportunity arose for us to source the water used in our processing from within our existing boundaries we jumped at the chance.

“We’re currently outsourcing 30 per cent less water, which aids water conservation.

“And we’re working on becoming entirely self-sufficient for water in the next 12 months.”

The move is the latest in a series by the firm to boost its ‘green’ credentials.

Airedale Chemical is the recipient of a Green Apple Award for environmental best practice.

Plus it received a gold accolade in the Zero Waste Awards for its ‘zero to landfill’ scheme – which completely cut-out site waste destined for landfill, instead recycling it for use in energy production and community projects.

Following the launch of the latest venture, the company is believed to be the only chemical firm in Yorkshire using its own natural springs in processing and one of only a few nationally.

Managing director, Chris Chadwick, welcomes the project.

He said: “We will be able to reduce the amount of drinking-quality water we use on site and reduce our overall carbon footprint, without having to expand the site. All of this will be concealed beneath a single manhole cover, so there will be no visual impact for our neighbours.

“We have been working closely with the Environment Agency to ensure the correct licensing and practices are in place and the agency will continue to monitor and inspect the operation to make sure all standards are met.

“A lot of time and effort has been invested into making our site work as effectively and ecologically as possible – and Daniel has done a fantastic job of pushing the company forward to become an environmentally-aware and resource-efficient business.

“We also recently invested £200,000 in solar panels and now draw zero electricity from the grid.”