Member: Laura Birrell
Company: Sticky Heelz
Why I joined: I previously worked for BRE and was incredibly passionate about supporting public and private sector to deliver against the net zero agenda. Having a child meant I had to change my career, but I remained very passionate about the subject area and believe I can bring a lot of my knowledge and experience of the built environment sector to the movement.
What I do in business: I have a number of business initiatives that I am progressing, however I am currently known for my Sticky Heelz brand, a product I designed and patented to address the issue of shoe slip and blisters. With 300 million pairs of shoes being sent to landfill in the UK alone and estimated 22 billion globally, it is great to have invented something that extends the life of shoes. I know this from experience, as one of the 60% or the population who has slightly different sized feet, my shoes always ended up slipping off after a couple of wears and were either binned or left in their shoe box ☹. My product addresses this problem, so now and no shoes are left in their box. My primary market for my products is the UK and north America.
Optionally share a hobby or passions I am happy sharing to the community: I am a very passionate and engaged ‘Footbaw Maw’ or ‘Soccer Mum’! Nothing fills my heart with pride more than watching my 7year old and his football team giving their all on the football pitch. I have literally been almost frozen to near death and soaked to the skin while watching him.
Personal actions I have taken or plan in their NetZero journey: I have all energy efficient lightbulbs in my house, I recycle as much as possible. My heating never goes above 21 degrees and is on a timer, all my household machines operate on efficient cycles and are all A+ or above rated. I have a renewable energy plan with my provider. I do use a car but it has an Eco setting that I use at all times, and I will use public transport when possible.
Company actions I have taken to accelerate NetZero: We operate on a lean business model outsourcing where possible as this reduces unnecessary use of land/buildings, as an informed business owner we undertake best practice where applicable to reduce our impact on the environment.
What expertise, knowledge, services or products they can offer to other members to accelerate their NetZero path: I have 10-years of experience working within the sustainability, climate change adaptation and energy efficiency sector, having worked with SME’s through to international governments to help support the movement toward Net Zero. I have worked on sustainable masterplans, innovative low carbon products, research projects to determine where carbon savings can be made, on sustainable construction (BREEAM) projects and post occupancy evaluation to determine where human failure can lead to carbon reductions not being achieved and sustainable procurement. I have broad understanding of scenarios where factors are required to interlink to deliver carbon reductions.
Finally, Something people might not know about you that makes you memorable: I once played football with the royal family on a beach on the western isles…when I was 10!