Construction sector lays foundations for low-carbon infrastructure

Cross-sector businesses, many of which are construction firms, have joined with Government to launch an initiative that aims to cut 24 million tonnes of carbon emissions from infrastructure projects by 2050.

Skanska, Carillion, Network Rail, Thames Water and National Grid are a handful of companies joining the initiative, which according to the Government will save the infrastructure sector up to four million tonnes of carbon per year (MtCO2e/year) of capital carbon and 20 MtCO2e/year of operational carbon by 2050.

Launched by Lord Deighton and Business and Energy Minister Michael Fallon, The Infrastructure Carbon Review suggests a series of actions businesses can take to reduce carbon throughout their operations and supply chains.

Setting out the actions, the review urges businesses to implement behaviour change initiatives, introduce carbon modelling tools and invest in new technologies when planning and carrying out infrastructure projects.

It claims that if emerging best practice is driven across the infrastructure sector over the coming years, the anticipated carbon savings could add almost £1.5bn per year to the UK economy.

Commenting on the joint initiative, Fallon said: “This review makes the business case for carbon reduction in what we build. It has been written by business leaders not civil servants and throws down the gauntlet to the construction sector to get behind what could be a game changing initiative”.

Currently infrastructure and related areas like energy, account for around half of all UK carbon emissions.

Leigh Stringer

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