Carbon Emissions – Building for our Future

By Stanley Gibbs – SMAS Worksafe Assessor

The National Federation of Builders (NFB) Major Contractors Group (MCG) have recently released a report (Transforming Construction for a Low Carbon Future) detailing the impact the building industry is having on the nations carbon emissions and offering guidance on what organisations should be doing now if the UK is to achieve the rapid changes demanded by politicians and society. Written by contractors, it is commercially focused, identifying how main contractors and the broader industry can provide their customers and wider society with a comprehensive and profitable construction service.

The chair of the MCG (Mark Wakeford), said ‘The UK is leading the world in affecting carbon reductions and our Government has recently pledged to move to a net-zero emissions target by 2050. This will drive huge change in people’s lives and place a titanic stress on businesses and organisations who will have to change the way that they work within complicated and sophisticated supply chains.’

He continues, ‘Nowhere is the change more difficult – and the opportunity so large – than in the UK building industry. We directly account for 10% of the country’s emissions and influence a massive 47% of all emissions through our work. However, the structure and nature of our fragmented industry makes rapid and coordinated change difficult.

This document is designed to prompt debate, but that debate must lead to action and it must do so fast. There is no time to lose to tackle climate change; the war on carbon must be fought. There must be an equal level of urgency in the industry to open our eyes to the challenges and opportunities ahead. In less than a generation, building and construction will have changed beyond all recognition. Anyone not preparing for this right now faces extinction.’

View the carbon report.