In 2019, the UK became the first major economy to pass net zero emissions law which will require the UK to bring greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050.
The UK Green Building Council states that the built environment contributes around 40% of the UK’s total carbon footprint. Almost half of this is from energy used in buildings and infrastructure that has nothing to do with their functional operation.
The industry has been trying to adopt various strategies to reduce the level of CO2 that’s produced during construction including the use of sustainable materials, implementing effective waste management systems, switching to more efficient vehicles to transport materials etc.
Being carbon and resource efficient is increasingly seen as a way of not merely complying with legislation, but also with winning new business, improving efficiency, cutting costs and breeding innovation.
The construction industry has started to take steps to become more sustainable by looking at new methods to cut down on waste as well as innovating new products that can help improve many facets of the building process.
In 2011, we produced a Carbon Action 2050 action plan to provide guidance for the built environment sector. It provides further information on how those in the sector can cut carbon emissions by applying innovation and best practice to project design, construction, maintenance, operation, retrofit and waste management. The skills needed to achieve net zero are a vital requirement to measure, manage and change environmental practices through effective leadership and we are supportive of members and organisations who go above and beyond to achieve the target.
We have policy positions that cover a wide range of key issues affecting the construction industry.