Rachel Espinosa

Rachel Espinosa

Rachel Espinosa

Principal Consultant, Resources and Waste Management

Rachel is a Principal Consultant in the Waste Technical Services team at Ricardo Energy & Environment, working with both private and public sector clients, principally in the UK, but also in Europe. An accomplished Chartered Waste Manager with a Master’s degree in Wastes Management and twenty-six years’ experience in the resource innovation and waste management industry, Rachel worked initially in local authority waste delivery teams and as a consultant since 2009. Rachel is a strong strategic practitioner and ‘all-rounder’ with extensive strategic and operational experience, touching on a broad range of waste management service delivery areas.

At Ricardo, Rachel leads on waste strategy development, circular economy and waste carbon projects. Rachel’s work includes project managing the development of a joint waste strategy for East London Waste Authority, encompassing waste flow analysis, modelling the impact of 11 waste collection methods across four Boroughs, advising on ELWA’s future options for waste transfer, processing and treatment and carbon impacts. She recently directed a project to quantify the UK recycling and waste sector’s greenhouse gas emissions on behalf of the Environmental Services Association, which included devising and modelling a range of scenarios to allow the sector to achieve Net Zero by 2040.

Prior to joining Ricardo in 2019, Rachel worked as an independent consultant offering expert advice and interim management services to businesses and local authorities. She also worked part-time for the University of Brighton providing business growth advice to ‘green businesses’ in Sussex. She has worked on a wide variety of projects for private and public sector clients within the waste industry and was frequently commissioned directly, for example with Bywaters, where Rachel provided expertise on business development projects. Her detailed analysis and support to a planning enquiry provided the business case for Bywaters to consolidate their operations and realise significant equity from the sale of a London-based waste site. As an associate, Rachel worked with a number of larger environmental consultancies, becoming a valued team member, providing specific skills and experience on larger commissions.

Rachel’s early waste management career centred on London, working directly for the unitary London Boroughs of Bexley, Lewisham and Tower Hamlets (the latter as a consultant), for North London Waste Authority (NLWA) and as a programme manager at London Remade. Rachel has strong experience of waste collection service delivery, treatment and disposal contract management and procurement processes, including devising and implementing waste strategies and procurement objectives. Rachel performed the role of waste disposal authorised officer and Board member, representing Lewisham Council’s shareholding stake in the South East London Combined Heat and Power (SELCHP) energy from waste incinerator. Rachel represented Lewisham within the joint waste disposal contract, held with Greenwich Council and SELCHP. Rachel also in-sourced and directly ran the authority’s HWRC and household recycling collection services, procuring materials off-take contracts for all waste streams managed by Lewisham’s direct service operations.

Rachel was appointed to NLWA to recruit and lead a team working on a programme of projects for the re-provision of the waste disposal contract for 7 Boroughs in the North London regional grouping, liaising regularly with Directors of Environment, Finance, elected Members and the Clerk to the Authority.

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