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Palmer-Jones gains Suez promotion

By 02/12/2019News

The chief executive of Suez Recycling and Recovery UK, David Palmer-Jones, has been promoted to group senior executive VP for Northern Europe at the company.

In his new role, Mr Palmer-Jones will be responsible for SUEZ’s recycling and recovery business activities across Northern Europe. This includes the UK, Sweden, Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Luxembourg, Poland, Serbia and the Czech Republic.

He will also be responsible for hazardous waste activities for all of Europe.

David Palmer Jones

In his new role, Mr Palmer-Jones will be responsible for SUEZ’s recycling business activities across Northern Europe

Suez confirmed that the appointment, which takes effect from 01 January 2020, is part of the “restructure of the global SUEZ group’s executive committee”, following Bertrand Camus’ promotion to group chief executive officer in May 2019.

His replacement, John Scanlon, who has been Chief Operations Officer for SUEZ in the UK for the past four years, will step up to be chief executive officer of SUEZ Recycling and Recovery UK when Mr Palmer-Jones takes on the new role.

In a statement, the French-owned company said the promotions of both Mr Palmer-Jones and Mr Scanlon to their Northern European and UK leadership positions respectively within SUEZ recycling and recovery, “ensures a continuity of leadership at the heart of the SUEZ group, which is set for further growth as the region transitions towards a circular-economy in resources”.


Mr Palmer-Jones has more than 30 years’ experience in the European waste, recycling and resources sector, all of which have been served at SUEZ since joining in 1989 to set up the group’s UK operations.

He has served as chief executive officer of SUEZ recycling and recovery UK since September 2008, then trading as SITA UK. He was previously chief executive officer of SITA Scandinavia from 2003 to 2006 before returning as UK operations director for the Industrial and Commercial Division.

Also, Mr Palmer-Jones has held a number of leadership roles within the wider recycling and resources sector in addition to his SUEZ executive positions.

This includes being chair of the Environmental Services Association (ESA) between 2012-14, president of FEAD (the European Federation of Waste Management and Environmental Services) between 2014-17 and the non-executive director/trustee of WRAP from 2009 to 2016.

He is also the current chair of the UK Resources Council.


During his tenure as CEO of SUEZ in the UK, a statement from Suez said that Mr Palmer-Jones “has played a major role in helping to shape policy and best practice in the recycling and waste management industry.”

Suez added that the new group senior executive has also been instrumental in overseeing the delivery of billions of pounds of new energy-from-waste infrastructure, “reducing the UK’s reliance on landfill and helping to promote a circular economy for materials.”

John Scanlon

Mr Palmer-Jones’ replacement, John Scanlon, has had a 28-year career with SUEZ, since joining in 1991 as one of the company’s first employees in the UK.

John Scanlon will succeed David Palmer-Jones as chief executive officer of SUEZ Recycling and Recovery UK

As chief executive officer of SUEZ recycling and recovery UK, Suez explained that Mr Scanlon will be responsible for “driving forward the SUEZ group’s recently announced SUEZ 2030 vision in the UK and for continuing to mobilise SUEZ’s newly won contracts in Greater Manchester and Somerset”.

With a background in chemistry, John has held a variety of operational and business development roles within SUEZ.

He was heavily involved with the first PFI contract that SUEZ won in Surrey in 1997.  He went on to be the general manager for that contract in 2000. John was closely involved in the development of SUEZ’s first EfW facilities.

At the age of 33, Mr Scanlon joined the SUEZ recycling and recovery UK executive team as Chief Operating Officer of the then Material Sourcing division in 2003. He went on to become Chief Operating Officer of the Processing Division and has been SUEZ’s Chief Operations Officer for Operations since 2015.

As well as being responsible for the operation of the company’s circa 300 facilities in the UK and 4,600 staff who work across SUEZ’s local authority, processing and industrial and commercial contracts, Mr Palmer-Jones has been responsible for “driving a lean culture in operations”, Suez said.

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Source: Waste Managment