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UK’s biggest infrastructure companies sign pledge to decarbonise the construction sector

• Anglian Water, Heathrow, The Lower Thames Crossing, National Highways, Northumbrian Water and Sellafield commit to tackle their biggest contributors to CO₂ emissions during construction – diesel, steel, and concrete.
• Firms have signed up to the Construction Leadership Council’s “Five Client Carbon Commitments” setting out their commitments on the journey to Net Zero.
• Pledges will give certainty, confidence, and clarity to the whole infrastructure sector supply chain on their biggest clients’ plans to decarbonise their projects.

The Construction Leadership Council (CLC) and Minister for Industry and Economic Security Alan Mak have today (Monday 29 April) brought together leaders from across the  construction   industry to sign up to “Five Client Carbon Commitments” – pledges which will help the sector to achieve Net Zero.

There is already a huge amount of work taking place across the construction industry to tackle the Net Zero challenge- today’s announcement is the next step. “The Five Client Carbon
Commitments” are:

1 Procure for low carbon construction and provide incentives in contracts.
2 Set phase out dates for fossil fuel use.
3 Eliminate the most carbon intensive concrete products.
4 Eliminate the most carbon intensive steel products.
5 Sign up to PAS 2080, allowing a common standard in carbon management and reporting.

By signing up to these five pledges organisations are signalling, in a common language, their commitment to i) significantly cut their construction carbon emissions and ii) setting out their
own roadmaps to achieve those commitments.

The pledges cover the largest emitting areas in infrastructure delivery, including ending the use of diesel on construction sites (by transitioning to alternative energy sources such as diesel
replacements, green hydrogen, and electric powered plant) and shifting to the lowest carbon sources of concrete and steel available.

The CLC is also asking client organisations to commit to using PAS2080, creating a common carbon management standard across the industry, and to put carbon reduction at the heart of their procurement processes. These pledges are a move that has been pioneered by the Lower Thames Crossing, resulting in a 50% reduction in carbon in its procurement process which
concluded recently.

The organisations which have already signed up are expected to invest tens of billions into UK infrastructure over the next decade and, through their buying power, can collectively give certainty to the supply chain on the increased demand for innovative low carbon products and solutions. This will help to incentivise manufacturers and suppliers to invest in new green technologies.

The construction industry plays a vital role in the success of the country’s economy by building and maintaining the infrastructure on which society relies, but it is also a significant generator of
CO₂ emissions and therefore climate change. The UK government has a target to reach Net Zero by 2050 – but with the construction sector producing a significant share of the country’s
carbon emissions, change is needed.


Industry Minister and Co-Chair of the Construction Leadership Council Alan Mak said “From investing in green skills and tech to boosting investment and innovation, there are huge opportunities in decarbonising for the UK construction sector. Through the Construct Zero framework, we could see thousands of new green jobs and billions in private sector investment being added to the UK economy. It’s fantastic to see these five Client Carbon Commitments signed today, which will go a long way towards achieving these

Mark Reynolds, Group Chairman and Chief Executive of Mace and Co-Chair of the Construction Leadership Council said “We are now at an inflection point where wholesale changes, brought about through cross[1]industry collaboration, are the only way to meet the speed and scale that Net Zero 2050 demands. Our launch of CO₂nstructZero in 2020 and the success we’ve seen so far has shown the value of collective frameworks. By creating these commitments for infrastructure delivery will allow clients in our industry to pursue more sustainable outcomes in a coordinated way, helping us all work together across the sector to drive towards decarbonisation.”

Matt Palmer, Industry Sponsor for Net Zero and Biodiversity at the Construction Leadership Council and Executive Director, Lower Thames Crossing said: “The UK relies on the infrastructure organisations build and run, but the way we have been doing so is incompatible with a Net Zero future. We cannot simply stop building and maintaining the infrastructure society relies on, so we must change and to adopt new materials and technologies. We need to be bold, and we need our partners and supply chain to come with us.

Our commitments today provide will start to provide clear client direction to decarbonise the largest emitting areas of construction.” In the coming months, more organisations are scheduled to sign up to the pledge, including East West Rail, Environment Agency, Houses of Parliament Restoration & Renewal, and National Grid.

Click here to learn more about the Five Client Carbon Commitments, and how you can get involved




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