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in association with

JUNE 2008
1 Foreword................................ 2
2 Introduction . ......................... 4
3 Procurement ......................... 8
4 Design . ................................ 14
5 Innovation.............................18
6 People ...................................22
7 Better Regulation ................ 27
8 Climate Change

Mitigation ............................ 30
9 Climate Change
Adaptation . ......................... 36
10 Water.................................... 40
11 Biodiversity.......................... 45
12 Waste ................................... 48
13 Materials . ............................ 52
14 Embedding and
Reporting Progress . ........... 56
15 Acknowledgements ............ 59
16 Contact Details .................... 60

1 Foreword
The construction industry is significant: its output is worth
over £100bn a year. It accounts for 8% of Gross Domestic
Product (GDP) and provides employment for around 3 million
workers. The public sector is a major client of the industry
and is responsible for directly procuring about a third of
all construction.
The output of the construction industry, be it public buildings,
commercial buildings, homes or infrastructure such as our
roads, harbours and sea defences, has a major impact on our
ability to maintain a sustainable economy overall and has a
major impact on our environment. Moreover, it is clear that
we cannot meet our declared environmental targets without
dramatically reducing the environmental impact of buildings
2 and infrastructure construction; we have to change the way
we design and build.
This joint industry and Government Strategy is based on a
shared recognition of the need to deliver a radical change in
the sustainability of the construction industry.
We want to lead the world in sustainable construction. The
Strategy for Sustainable Construction represents a commitment
from the industry to work towards this vision by reducing its
carbon footprint and its consumption of natural resources,
while creating a safer and stronger industry by training
JUNE 2008

and retaining a skilled and committed workforce. It lays out

specific actions by industry and by Government which will
contribute to the achievement of overarching targets within
each of the main areas covered by the sustainability agenda.

For its part, in its 2007 Sustainable Procurement Action Plan

the Government set out its aim for procure more sustainable
properties and infrastructure to be procured throughout the
public sector. This Strategy also aims to provide greater clarity
about the range of Government commitments and targets
which are relevant to the delivery of a sustainable construction

Shriti Vadera Phil Woolas
Department for Business, Department for Environment,
Enterprise & Regulatory Reform (BERR) Food and Rural Affairs (Defra)

Caroline Flint Ian Pearson
Department for Communities and Department for Innovation,
Local Government (CLG) Universities & Skills (DIUS)


Margaret Hodge William Jordan

Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) Office of Government Commerce (OGC)
Centre for Expertise in Sustainable Procurement

Mike Davies
Chair of the Strategic Forum for Construction
JUNE 2008

Economic Contribution
of Construction
The construction industry makes an important contribution
to the competitiveness and prosperity of the economy. A
modern, efficient infrastructure is a key driver of productivity,
and the construction industry has a major role in delivering
the built infrastructure in an innovative and cost effective
way. Firms throughout the economy are dependent on the
4 performance of built infrastructure such as roads, rail, power
stations and telecoms networks to remain competitive,
and inward investors will consider the quality of the built
infrastructure as one of the key factors when considering
location decisions. Our productivity also depends on
the efficiency and nature of the built environment. The
flexibility, mobility and effectiveness of the workforce
and the productivity of firms depend on the availability of
appropriately configured and located houses and premises.
The design, construction and operation of our built
JUNE 2008

environment have other important economic effects, for

example, on the rate at which we use resources. Buildings
are responsible for almost half of the country’s carbon
emissions, half of our water consumption, about one third

of landfill waste and one quarter1 of all raw materials used in

the economy. Through its impact on the built environment,
construction plays a central role in our drive to promote
sustainable growth and development.

1 420Mt from a total of 1508Mt

420Mt - The Construction Industry Mass Balance: resource use, wastes and emissions, R
A Smith, J R Kersey and P J Griffiths, Viridis Report VR4 (Revised), 2003, ISSN 1478–0143
1508Mt - page 59, Mass Balance: An Essential Tool for Understanding Resource Flows,
Conor Linstead, Caroline Gervais and Paul Ekins, October 2003,

Government and industry share a vision This Strategy complements the Action
of construction as a competitive sector Plan for Civil Engineering published
which plays a central role in delivering in July 20076. The Strategy does not
sustainability and prosperity across encompass some of the broader issues
the economy. facing developers such as planning,
the management of the existing built
The Government has introduced a environment and transport policy.
wide range of measures to promote Information on Planning policy7,
competitiveness, most recently in the Built Environment8 and Transport
the Enterprise Strategy, Enterprise: policy9 can be found below in the
unlocking the UK’s talent2 and the relevant footnote.
Innovation White Paper, Innovation
Nation3. This Strategy is developed by The Strategy lies alongside a strong
Government and the industry to focus business case for the sustainable
on sustainability in construction. construction agenda, based on:- 5
• Increasing profitability by using
resources more efficiently;
Joint Industry/ • Firms securing opportunities offered
Government by sustainable products or ways

Strategy of working;
• Enhancing company image and
The Strategy4 for Sustainable profile in the market place by
Construction will help to deliver the addressing issues relating to
aims set out in the UK’s Sustainable Corporate and Social Responsibility.

Development Strategy5. It is a joint

industry and Government initiative,
and is intended to promote leadership
and behavioural change, as well as
delivering substantial benefits to both
the construction industry and the
wider economy.

2 www.tinyurl.com/2mhpkp
3 www.tinyurl.com/2mykoz
4 This is a Strategy for England. Policy for most aspects
of sustainable construction are devolved matters.
Government departments continue to work closely with 6 www.tinyurl.com/6ytgcg
Welsh, Scottish and Northern Irish counterparts who
are also driving forward the sustainable construction 7 www.planningportal.gov.uk
agenda. 8 www.cabe.org.uk
5 www.tinyurl.com/2rs3h7 9 www.dft.gov.uk
JUNE 2008

To deliver the Strategy, Government
and industry have devised a set of
overarching targets related to the ‘ends’
Purpose of and ‘means’ of sustainable construction.

the Strategy The ‘ends’ relate directly to sustainability

issues, such as climate change and
This Strategy is aimed at providing biodiversity; the ‘means’ describe
clarity around the existing policy processes to help achieve the ‘ends’.
framework and signalling the future The following table sets out overarching
direction of Government policy. It targets and the chapters of the Strategy
aims to realise the shared vision of in which they are discussed. Central
6 sustainable construction by: to each of these chapters is a delivery
• Providing clarity to business on the plan for industry and Government of
Government’s position by bringing specific actions and deliverables which
together diverse regulations and will contribute to the achievement of the
initiatives relating to sustainability; overarching target.

• Setting and committing to

higher standards to help achieve
sustainability in specific areas;
• Making specific commitments by
industry and Government to take
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the sustainable construction

agenda forward.
Chapter Headings Overarching Target 2

To achieve improved whole life value through the promotion
of best practice construction procurement and supply side
Procurement integration, by encouraging the adoption of the Construction
Commitments in both the public and private sectors and
throughout the supply chain.

The overall objective of good design is to ensure that

buildings, infrastructure, public spaces and places are
buildable, fit for purpose, resource efficient, sustainable,
resilient, adaptable and attractive. Good design is
Design synonymous with sustainable construction.
Our aim is to achieve greater use of design quality
The ‘Means’

assessment tools relevant to buildings, infrastructure, public

spaces and places.

To enhance the industry’s capacity to innovate and increase

Innovation the sustainability of both the construction process and its
resultant assets.

An increase in organisations committing to a planned

approach to training (e.g. Skills Pledges; training plans;
Investors in People or other business support tools;
People Continuous Professional Development (CPD); life long
Reduce the incidence rate of fatal and major injury accidents
by 10% year on year from 2000 levels.

Better Regulation
A 25% reduction in the administrative burdens affecting the
private and third sectors, a 30% reduction in those affecting
the public sector by 2010.

Reducing total UK carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by at least

60% on 1990 levels by 2050 and by at least 26% by 2020.
Within this, Government has already set out its policy that
Climate Change
new homes will be zero carbon from 2016, and an ambition
Mitigation that new schools, public sector non-domestic buildings and
other non-domestic buildings will be zero carbon from 2016,
2018 and 2019 respectively.

Climate Change To develop a robust approach to adaptation to climate change,

Adaptation shared across Government. STRATEGY FOR SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION
The ‘Ends’

To assist with the Future Water vision to reduce per capita

consumption of water in the home through cost effective
Water measures, to an average of 130 litres per person per day by
2030, or possibly even 120 litres per person per day depending
on new technological developments and innovation.

That the conservation and enhancement of biodiversity within

Biodiversity and around construction sites is considered throughout all
stages of a development.

By 2012, a 50% reduction of construction, demolition and

Waste excavation waste to landfill compared to 2008.

That the materials used in construction have the least

Materials environmental and social impact as is feasible both socially
and economically.
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To achieve improved whole life value through the

promotion of best practice construction procurement
and supply side integration, by encouraging the adoption
of the Construction Commitments10 (See Construction
Commitments pages at the end of this chapter) in both
the public and private sectors and throughout the supply

8 Context
Good procurement practice is crucially important to reduce
the overall cost of projects, to improve the economic efficiency
of the construction industry and to ensure that projects, when
complete, are fit for purpose, thereby securing whole life value.
For the public sector, there is an extensive range of
standards, advice and guidance which forms the procurement
framework. This material is generally considered to be of high
quality. While the public sector will never be a single, uniform
client, and Government has made a great deal of progress, it
JUNE 2008

is clear that more needs to be done to ensure best practice is

more widespread. This was reflected in the April 2007 National
Audit Office (NAO) report “Building for the future”11.

The 2005 NAO report “Improving public services through

better construction”12 identified significant benefits to the
public purse (£2.6 billion annually) through the adoption
of best practice procurement. This represents a powerful
business case to base procurement on whole life costs (rather
than the cheapest option) and to engage at an early stage with
the supply chain.

10 www.strategicforum.org.uk
11 www.tinyurl.com/ywpl4p
12 www.tinyurl.com/5yu6l

The goal of its Sustainable Procurement This Strategy seeks to build on a
Action Plan13 is for the UK Government shared commitment to procure in a
to be among the European Union (EU) more sustainable way and focuses
leaders in sustainable procurement by on promoting the business case
2009 to help achieve a low carbon more for better procurement practices in
resource efficient public sector. The the public and private sectors. For
Government is committed to driving up this reason, the Strategic Forum for
standards in sustainable procurement Construction16 (SFfC), the Public Sector
for public sector buyers. The 2008 Construction Clients’ Forum17 (PSCCF),
Budget14 announced a new policy and the Construction Clients Group18
framework for procurement including feature extensively in the actions and
practical guidance on how to take the deliverables table.
environment into account; and that a
There are a number of enabling
new Centre for Expertise in Sustainable
operations which can play a significant
Procurement will be established in the
role in the effective delivery of a
Office of Government Commerce (OGC).
construction project. One of these is 9
Government recognizes the importance logistics (in its widest sense). Often
of innovation in procurement through considered a backroom function,
market-based incentives such as logistics can be overlooked in terms
Forward Commitment Procurement15 of its contribution to the broad
with direct support for innovation. The ‘improvement’ and sustainability
Department for Innovation, Universities agenda. Studies19 have shown that
and Skills (DIUS) will take forward improving logistics (product transport,
this combined approach, working handling, delivery and storage) can
closely with other departments, to reduce up to 2.5% of a capital project
support suppliers to bring forward cost and significantly reduce waste and STRATEGY FOR SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION

new approaches to be developed in transport carbon emissions. While the

partnership with the public sector. construction industry has been slow to
challenge the status quo and look to
The construction industry is also
better practices, other sectors have seen
seeking to drive up standards through
the optimum integration of logistics into
the Construction Commitments16.
the production process as central to
their success.

13 www.tinyurl.com/yp9dsc
14 See full Budget 2008 Report at: www.tinyurl.
com/2ethop 17 www.tinyurl.com/yntusz
15 www.tinyurl.com/5hgvpz 18 See www.tinyurl.com/4ew5hx for details
16 See: www.strategicforum.org.uk for further details 19 See: www.tinyurl.com/3ojuee for details
JUNE 2008

Actions and Deliverables

List of Actions & Deliverables Body Timescale
which contribute to the Responsible for
Overarching Target each action/

Parts of the industry – clients, consultants, main Strategic Forum 2012 - measured using
contractors, specialist contractors*, and product Constructing Excellence
manufacturers and suppliers – to be engaged in Key Performance
supply chains on 30% of construction projects and Indicator (KPI) data
for 40% of their work to be conducted through
integrated project teams.
* These targets apply to those specialist contractors
involved in Mechanical & Electrical work. For other
specialists, the target is to establish by 2012 a mechanism
for measuring integration in their sector.

35% of client activity, by value, embraces the Strategic Forum 2010 - Constructing
principles of the Clients’ Commitments20. Excellence using
the Construction
industry KPIs

10 60% of client activity, by value, embraces the Strategic Forum 2012 - Constructing
principles of the Clients’ Commitments. Excellence using
the Construction
industry KPIs
BERR21/SFfC Integration Demonstration Projects. BERR/SFfC Ongoing
Task Group
BERR / OGC22 / Constructing Excellence Best BERR/OGC 2009
Practice Roadshows.

Review of Procurement Strategies set out in OGC and PSCCF24 2008

JUNE 2008

Achieving Excellence23 to ensure alignment

with the delivery of whole life value.

Creation of a Centre of Expertise in Sustainable OGC 2008 / 2009


Development of simple "how to" guidance Construction 2009
clients. Clients Group18

20 The Clients’ Commitments refer to the support of the

Construction Commitments by the Construction
Clients Group18 22 Office of Government Commerce
21 Department for Business, Enterprise & Regulatory 23 www.tinyurl.com/4thee2
Reform 24 Public Sector Construction Clients’ Forum

The Sustainable Development
Commission (SDC) reports on
Departmental progress towards the
targets for sustainable operations

Measurement on the Government estate (SOGE)28.

This scrutiny includes examining
and Reporting progress with completing BREEAM29
assessments for new builds and
Client leadership, procurement and major refurbishment (See the Design
integration are key planks of the Egan Chapter below) and compliance with
industry improvement agenda25. The the mandatory procurement standards
Strategic Forum for Construction has published alongside the 2007 UK
agreed a measurement regime for Sustainable Procurement Action Plan13.
monitoring the industry’s progress The SDC reports on progress via its
towards more integrated working and annual Sustainable Development in
increasing client leadership. More Government Reports30.
widespread adoption of integrated
working practices within the industry The Department for Environment,
should help deliver a more sustainable Food and Rural Affairs31 (Defra) already 11
end product. This will be reviewed provides guidance to construction
on an annual basis and is based clients on setting targets, measuring
on Constructing Excellence’s Key and reporting performance.
Performance Indicator (KPI) data26.
As part of the Comprehensive Spending
Review, a new set of Public Service Future Work
Agreements27 which incorporate the Government will continue to work
principles of sustainable development closely with the Strategic Forum for
have been agreed. Permanent Construction. Close collaboration is
Secretaries are accountable for their
essential if we are to make real progress.
departments’ overall progress against
these agreements and for ensuring, The actions and deliverables above set
from 2007-2008 onwards, that key staff out a range of activities to promote best
in their departments have performance practice throughout the construction
objectives and incentives that drive industry and its client base. Achieving
the implementation of the Sustainable a truly integrated industry remains a
Procurement Action Plan. major challenge.

28 www.tinyurl.com/4n8ty7
29 BRE Environmental Assessment Method
25 www.tinyurl.com/62ad7a 30 www.tinyurl.com/3lbu5a
26 www.tinyurl.com/5yyw63 31 Through WRAP, Carbon Trust and the Energy
27 www.tinyurl.com/685us3 Saving Trust
JUNE 2008

The full text of the Construction Commitments are available

from the Strategic Forum for Construction website:


A successful procurement policy requires ethical sourcing,
enables best value to be achieved and encourages the early
involvement of the supply chain. An integrated project team
works together to achieve the best possible solution in terms
of design, buildability, environmental performance and
sustainable development.
Valuing people leads to a more productive and engaged
workforce, facilitates recruitment and retention of staff and
engages local communities positively in construction projects.

Client leadership is vital to the success of any project and
enables the construction industry to perform at its best.
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Sustainability lies at the heart of design and construction.
A sustainable approach will bring full and lasting
environmental, social and economic benefits.

The design should be creative, imaginative, sustainable and 13
capable of meeting delivery objectives. Quality in design and
construction utilising the best of modern methods will ensure
that the project meets the needs of all stakeholders, both
functionally and architecturally.


Health and safety is integral to the success of any project,
from design and construction to subsequent operation
JUNE 2008


The overall objective of good design is to ensure that

buildings, infrastructure, public spaces and places are
buildable, fit for purpose, resource efficient, sustainable,
resilient, adaptable and attractive. Good design is
synonymous with sustainable construction.

Our aim is to achieve greater use of design quality

assessment tools relevant to buildings, infrastructure,
public spaces and places.


No building, infrastructure, public space or place can be
considered genuinely well designed, or sustainable, if it does
not contribute to the triple bottom line of environmental,
social and economic sustainability.
A good design process requires real engagement with key
stakeholders but offers the prospects of more sustainable
JUNE 2008

management and maintenance of assets, and more

competitive running costs.

CABE (the Commission for Architecture • The Strategic Forum for Construction
and the Built Environment) is clear and the Construction Industry
that delivering design quality requires Council, by promoting the Design
strong leadership and a clear vision Quality Indicator (DQI)34, a process
from both clients and construction for evaluating design quality of
teams on what is to be achieved. buildings;
Government continues to champion
• CABE, the Home Builders Federation
sustainable design through its Better
and the Civic Trust by developing
Public Building initiative32. For example,
and promoting the Building for Life
sustainable design and procurement
scheme35: a process for evaluating 15
is recognized in the criteria for the
the design quality of new homes;
Prime Minister’s Award for Better
Public Building. At Cabinet level, the • The Institution of Civil Engineers
Prime Minister has recently reaffirmed (ICE), the Building Research
the importance of good design, and Establishment (BRE) and the
Andy Burnham, as Secretary of State, Construction Industry Research and
DCMS33, has taken on the role of cross- Information Association (CIRIA),
Government Design Champion. At a who have developed the CEEQUAL36
local level, CABE supports a network of assessment and award scheme for
design champions in public authorities evaluating the environmental design STRATEGY FOR SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION
across the country. And at all levels, quality of civil engineering and
leadership needs to be informed by infrastructure projects.
expert professional knowledge and
an understanding of and engagement • English Partnerships (EP) and
with the views of multiple stakeholders Housing Corporation38 (HC) will
throughout the design and construction continue to adopt Building for
process, both from within the industry Life as a consistent design quality
and beyond. benchmark and to ensure that
housing schemes are delivered to a
Various parties are driving forward the high standard against this.
design agenda, including:

34 www.dqi.org.uk
32 www.betterpublicbuildings.gov.uk 35 www.buildingforlife.org
33 Department for Culture Media and Sport 36 www.ceequal.com
JUNE 2008

Actions and Deliverables

List of Actions & Deliverables Body Timescale
which contribute to the Responsible for
Overarching Target each action/

10% increase year on year from 2007 levels in Strategic Forum 2010 - CIC37
the proportion of projects using DQI in public measurement of
buildings (custodial, police, fire, courts and other number of DQI projects
public projects), housing, and education projects.

10% increase year on year in the number of times Strategic Forum 2010 - CIC
the projects above use DQI. measurement of
number of DQI events

Continued 10% per annum growth from 2010 Strategic Forum 2012 - CIC
levels in both of the first 2 targets. measurement of
16 number of DQI projects
and events

80% of projects to achieve at least 50% demand Strategic Forum 2010 - CIC
side representation at all workshops. measurement of ratio at
DQI events

Full compliance with targets set in 2006 to achieve All Government Immediate
BREEAM ‘excellent’ for new builds and ‘very Departments
good’ for major refurbishments procured by (SDC monitoring89)
Central Government, supported by the Centre for
Expertise in Sustainable Procurement within OGC.
JUNE 2008

All public sector funded housing is built to Communities and By 2011

Lifetime Homes Standards40a. Local Government


37 Construction Industry Council

38 During 2008/9, English Partnerships and the Housing
Corporation will transfer to a new body, The Homes
and Community Agency. See www.tinyurl.com/6k5d66
for further details.

Future Work
The Office of Government Commerce
(OGC) Property Benchmarking
38 Service41, which captures a number of
key sustainability metrics at building

Measurement level, became mandatory from 1 April

2008, for all Government offices over
and Reporting 500 square metres. This will allow all
Government departments and their
On behalf of the Strategic Forum for sponsored bodies to benchmark the
Construction, the Construction Industry performance of their property against
Council will measure progress towards industry best practice, informing
the Design Quality Indicator targets and strategic decisions about buildings and
report on an annual basis. their impact on departmental delivery. 17
The Sustainable Development The central database of civil estate
Commission gathers information properties, holdings and occupations
from Departments on their use of (e-PIMS42) is being enhanced in order to
BREEAM and reports annually via its accommodate this data.
annual Sustainable Development in It is crucial that sustainable urban and
Government Reports39. The latest report landscape design is integrated into the
was published on 18th March 200840. design and construction process to
ensure that the environmental, social
and economic capacity of the physical STRATEGY FOR SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION

and natural environment and the Green

Infrastructure43 of sustainable towns
and cities, is protected, maintained
and enhanced.

39 www.tinyurl.com/3lbu5a
40 www.tinyurl.com/5zlo84
40a Lifetime Homes, Lifetime Neighbourhoods, Feb 08, 41 www.tinyurl.com/6898tc
DCLG, Chapter 7, page 87, www.tinyurl.com/37btps.
Lifetime Homes standards is an element in the Code for 42 See www.tinyurl.com/3rfc7g for further details
Sustainable Homes 43 www.greeninfrastructure.co.uk
JUNE 2008



To enhance the industry’s capacity to innovate and

18 increase the sustainability of both the construction
process and its resultant assets.

Innovation is the successful exploitation of new ideas to
obtain competitive advantage. It is integral to developing
new products for the market and new processes and ways of
working. Greater sustainability should be at the heart of policy
JUNE 2008

(like the Code for Sustainable Homes44) and of standards and

procurement to provide the signals to which the market can
respond in an innovative and flexible manner.

44 www.tinyurl.com/5hg4n7

The challenge for Government, industry BERR and the TSB are working
and the knowledge base is to establish closely with overseas partners on the
a framework within which innovation, innovation needs of a sustainable
research, development, demonstration, construction industry in the new
and knowledge transfer can thrive. The European Research Area network for the
industry-led National Platform for the construction and operation of Buildings
Built Environment45 is developing a (ERACOBUILD) due to commence in
Strategic Research Agenda identifying Autumn 2008.
future research priorities for the
industry. One of its three priority themes The Government first published “Quick
is reduced resource consumption. Wins”50 procurement standards,
This is also one of the priority themes which are mandatory for Government
for the Strategic Research Agenda departments, in 2003. These standards
to 2030, developed by the European were updated and extended in 2007.
Construction Technology Platform46, Further updates will be published
within which a major Joint Technology later this year. They include minimum
Initiative on Energy Efficient Buildings is specifications for central heating,
being developed47. air conditioning, glazing and water
appliances. BSI51 has also published its
The Technology Strategy Board (TSB) revised standard: 19
has developed an Innovation Platform “Design management systems:
in Low Impact Buildings48 to enable guide to managing innovation”,
industry to deliver more sustainable (BS 7000-1:2008).
buildings though collaborative research
and development (R&D), demonstration The Government Chief Information and
programmes, and design competitions. Chief Technology Officers’ Councils
The Platform will address a number have produced two toolkits for Green
of key themes such as the integration Information and Communications
of technologies into viable buildings; Technology (Green ICT). A Green
design tools for future climate ICT Scorecard is available to aid
change; the use of new materials and the review and improvement of

components; building management existing installations and there is also

and the use of low-carbon energy guidance, materials and information
sources. The Platform will draw on the on best practice for the construction
Knowledge Transfer Network for the of sustainable data centres and the
Modern Built Environment (MBE-KTN)49 procurement of Green ICT52.
which aims to intensify technological
innovation in the built environment and
promote knowledge transfer.

45 www.nationalplatform.org.uk
46 www.tinyurl.com/4djaoa
47 www.tinyurl.con/53nh7d 50 www.tinyurl.com/5o4bzz
48 www.tinyurl.com/4ucnet 51 www.bsi-global.com
49 www.mbektn.co.uk 52 www.tinyurl.com/56nme2
JUNE 2008
Actions and Deliverables

List of Actions & Deliverables Body Timescale

which contribute to the Responsible
Overarching Target for each action/

Complete and publicise the National Platform’s Strategic National Platform; By September
Research Agenda shaping medium to long term MBE-KTN. 2008
research priorities in Reduced Resource Consumption;
Client orientated value; and information technology
and automation. The aim is to promote awareness and
engagement with the research agenda and influence
Research & Development (R&D) direction and support.

Low Impact Building Innovation Platform - 1st stage – TSB Commenced in

the development of collaborative R&D and Design May 2008. Initial
challenge competitions. activity to 2011
2nd stage activities will develop demonstration and
procurement opportunities.

To ensure the Knowledge Transfer Network attracts a TSB and MBE-KTN to Summer 2009
critical mass of construction businesses, and identifies Consortium
areas where it has added value with members
successfully exploiting new technologies and techniques
including learning from overseas and other industries.

NESTA Pilot published

20 NESTA56 to create a new annual innovation index to
“measure British innovation in the round”. 2009

Develop a third phase of the Sustainable Urban Engineering & 2008

Environment Research Programme53 . Physical Sciences
Research Council

Eco-towns initiative54. Creating 10 new socially, economic Department for 2016 (up to
and environmentally sustainable (zero-carbon) new Communities and five Eco-Towns)
settlements of up to 20,000 homes. Local Government 2020 (10
(CLG) & Local expected)
JUNE 2008

The Carbon Challenge Programme57a will help accelerate English 2009 (first
the home building industry’s response to climate change Partnerships (EP) completed
by fast-tracking the creation of a number of new zero units). 2011
carbon communities initially on EP owned sites which (First completed

53 55
will meet the zero carbon, water, waste and other targets development)
of Code level 6.

Ensure UK co-develops relevant research studies TSB, BERR Autumn 2008 to

and co-ordinates collaborative R&D support on Autumn 2011
sustainable construction with partners in the
proposed new European Construction Research
Area network: ERACOBUILD.

53 www.tinyurl.com/6lbtxd setting procurement requirements for good

practice and measuring and reporting
54 Companies may commit to higher and earlier performance.
targets than the national target for 2012. The
Construction Waste Commitment includes 55 www.tinyurl.com/5dvelg

and Reporting
Ongoing indications of the state of
innovation will be gauged by the
biennial DIUS Community Innovation
Survey, and the TSB, Regional
Development Agencies (RDAs) and
• The Foresight project (sponsored
European Commission statistics on
by DIUS, CLG, Defra and BERR) on
R&D grant awards.
“Sustainable Energy Management
A desire for better indicators of the and the Built Environment” which
state of innovation in the sector will will report in autumn 2008.
be explored in the context of the DIUS
• The Government response58 to the
and NESTA56 - led work to develop an
Commission for Environmental
innovation index progress on wich
Markets and Economic Performance
will be reported in the first annual
report60 undertook to examine
innovation report to be published in
the product approvals regime
autumn 2008.
for innovative products in the
construction sector to understand
better the barriers to introducing
Future Work innovative, sustainable products.
• The European Union’s Lead • The Energy Technologies Institute59,
Markets Initiative57 on sustainable with a focus on supporting
construction (one of six pilot markets development programmes
chosen), which aims to influence and contributing to low carbon, secure
promote demand for the supply of energy supplies, may also consider STRATEGY FOR SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION

innovative products and services, support for projects on improving

through reviewing regulation, energy efficiency of the existing
procurement and standards. build stock in the context of its
The Comité Européen de Normalisation proposed work programme on
(CEN) has established a Working Energy Efficiency in Domestic and
Group under the aegis of BSI, with Commercial Buildings.
the task to carry out an inventory
of existing standards to identify
possible further contributions to
the initiative.

56 National Endowment for Science,

Technology and the Arts: www.nesta.org.uk
57 www.tinyurl.com/4qp8e3 58 www.tinyurl.com/553b5b
57a www.tinyurl.com/3jpsen 59 www.energytechnologies.co.uk
JUNE 2008

6 People

An increase in organisations committing to a planned approach to training

(e.g. Skills Pledges; training plans; Investors in People or other business
support tools; Continuous Professional Development (CPD); life long learning).
The various built environment Sector Skills Councils (SSCs) are at different
stages in developing their Sector Skills Agreements, and developing strategies
in this area. The members of the Built Environment Skills Alliance (BESA) have
agreed to embrace the principle of the approach (driving a training culture) set
out here. For instance ConstructionSkills60 (building / civil engineering) aims to
increase the number of organisations adopting training plans or committing to
Investors in People (or other business support tools) to 6,400 by 2010 and 9,400
by 2015. The aim is that other sectors’ SSCs, or industry training bodies would
be added, with their associated targets, as soon as possible.
JUNE 2008

Reduce the incidence rate of fatal and major injury accidents by 10% year on
year from 2000 levels.

60 www.constructionskills.net

The training and development scene for Although suppliers may think a training
the built environment is characterised need exists, it is not always clear that
by a large number of players: various firms or individuals want a specific
Sector Skills Councils (SSCs); bodies training product or service. This is
such as the Academy for Sustainable why it is so important that the skills
Communities (ASC)61 and the Green system is shaped around the needs
Building Council (UK - GBC)62; and of employers.
training providers. The SSCs have
Fostering demand by promoting and
developed, or are developing, their
instilling a culture of training and life
Sector Skills Agreements and other
long learning / continuous professional
high level skills strategies. The ASC
development, is at the heart of
is a centre of excellence working
this Strategy. This is intentionally
at a strategic level, supporting
a high level, generic approach,
the construction sector to deliver
sustainable communities.
which gives scope on which a wide 23
range of sustainability-specific skills
A number of responses to the organisations can build. Championing
consultation on the draft Strategy effective brokerage mechanisms,
highlighted training supply aspects, and working with the training/
such as the perceived need for more development supply side to create a
accessible training provision in better understanding of the benefits
particular areas. Others focused on the of training/development, especially
need to encourage customer demand sustainability aspects, will be important.
for skills development among both Work to drive improved health and
companies and individuals. Unless safety in the industry will also feature. STRATEGY FOR SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION
demand is nurtured, training products
Generating demand and uptake for
and services will not be used, and the
learning and training will require
knowledge/skills base will not develop.
increased awareness, understanding
and engagement at community and
individual levels, particularly among
children and young people. This
should generate a supply of motivated
people interested in further training
and development.

61 www.ascskills.org.uk
62 www.ukgbc.org
JUNE 2008

Actions and Deliverables

List of Actions & Deliverables Body Responsible Timescale
which contribute to the for each action/
Overarching Target deliverable

Net increase of 230,000 qualified people recruited Strategic Forum 2010 - from Annual
and trained in the industry compared with 2006 Labour Force

Net increase of 260,000 qualified people recruited Strategic Forum 2012 - from Annual
and trained in the industry compared with 2006 Labour Force

To achieve 13,500 apprenticeship completions in Strategic Forum 2012 - Information

24 England, Wales and Scotland by 2010 and to increase
this to 18,700 a year by 2012
from CS Managing

Promotion of Investors in People, other business ConstructionSkills 2008 and

support tools, and Skills Pledge through Company continuing
Development Advisors (ConstructionSkills), and
CS central marketing.

Development and promotion of sector-specific Proskills August 2008

Skills Pledge

Development of Action Plan for driving a training Proskills August 2008

culture in the building products sector.
JUNE 2008

Promotion of the value of CPD, and facilitating Construction Industry 2008 and
access to suitable developmental training on Council, professional continuing
sustainability aspects. institutions, BERR.

Influencing the development of the Construction ConstructionSkills 2008 and

Qualifications Strategy (CQS). The CQS Action continuing
Plan includes: Strategy Strand 20: Identify and
implement strategies to support cross cutting
themes important to the development of a
sustainable, inclusive construction industry.

List of Actions & Deliverables Body Responsible Timescale
which contribute to the for each action/
Overarching Target deliverable

Fully trained, qualified and competent workforce Strategic Forum 2010 - Annual
on all projects Labour Force
Survey and trade
association site

Reduce the incidence rate of fatal and major injury Strategic Forum 2010 - Information64
accidents by 10% year on year from 2000 levels provided by HSE

Reduce the incidence rate of cases of work-related Strategic Forum 2010 - Constructing
ill health by 20% from 2000 levels Better Health, HSE 25

50% increase in projects offering a route to Strategic Forum 2012 - Constructing

Occupational Health support from 2008 Better Health, HSE

10% year on year reduction in the incidence rate Strategic Forum 2012 - Information
of fatal and major injuries from 2010 levels provided by HSE

30% increase from 2007 level of micro-SMEs Strategic Forum 2012 - Surveys
63(Small and Medium Sized Enterprises) and SMEs undertaken by
taking up Health & Safety training and education ConstructionSkills, STRATEGY FOR SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION
64at an organisational level Working Well
Excellence, HSE

63 Universities and Colleges Admission Service;

and the Higher Education Funding Council for England.
64 Health and Safety Executive
JUNE 2008

• Additional specific interventions

which will support the overall agenda
are likely to emerge over time. Some
Measurement of the ideas that emerged from the
consultation on the draft Strategy
and Reporting will be helpful in this respect. The
role of the Regional Development
The main built environment SSCs
Agencies will be crucial, and they
will organise and maintain systems to
will be closely involved in the
track progress against targets as part
implementation of this Strategy.
of their ongoing role. Reporting will be
Many of the skills issues are seen in
done annually.
other industry sectors, and in some
cases there may be shared solutions.

Future Work • As part of the National Skills

Academy for Construction activity
• Work in this area is part of the wider based on the Olympic site, the
26 Government Skills Strategy, World Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA)
Class Skills65. will be piloting a way of linking up
the support offered through Learning
• There is a programme of ongoing and Skills Council’s Train to Gain and
work being pursued by HSE and the Employability funds and DWP66 City
industry to improve health and safety Strategy Pathfinder funding.
in construction.
• SummitSkills67, industry, CLG and
• Activities relevant to developing Defra will take forward work on the
sustainable communities are covered development of codes and standards
in the programmes and strategies for the training of plumbers on the
of the Academy for Sustainable installation of water-efficiency systems.
JUNE 2008

Communities (ASC). It is important

that the SSCs and the ASC continue • SummitSkills, industry, CLG and
to work together on this agenda. Defra will take forward work
concerning the development of

training programmes for Facilities

Managers and plumbers on the
need for, and operation of
water-efficient buildings.

65 World Class Skills: implementing the Leitch

Review of Skills in England, July 2007, DIUS, 66 Department for Work and Pensions
see: www.tinyurl.com/66gz4u 67 www.summitskills.org.uk

7 Better

A 25% reduction in the administrative burdens affecting

the private and third sectors, and a 30% reduction in
those affecting the public sector by 2010.

The Government is committed to cutting red tape for business,
the public and voluntary sectors. Proportionate, risk based
regulation can help provide protection and deliver significant STRATEGY FOR SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION

benefits for businesses. Better Regulation is about striking

the right balance between regulation and protection without
disproportionately increasing costs or deterring compliance.
The need to present policy and legislative requirements
coherently is integral to the Better Regulation agenda. The
Climate Change Bill currently (June 2008) before Parliament
will provide, amongst other things, a clear framework for the
UK to achieve its long-term goals of reducing carbon dioxide
emissions and to ensure that steps are taken towards adapting
to the impact of climate change.
JUNE 2008

Given the role that Building Regulations68

play in setting requirements for
standards of construction, and
improving compliance, Government is:
The Better Regulation agenda is also
being taken forward by the Environment • working to improve the building
Agency, which is working with control system in England and Wales.
stakeholders to develop a Construction A consultation was published in
Sector Partnership Plan. This will be a March 200869;

28 collaborative document that identifies • looking at ways to make the Building

jointly agreed environmental priorities Regulations68 system deliver better
with contractors in the sector and compliance, with reduced burdens
voluntary mechanisms to promote to industry;
better environmental outcomes.
This will complement existing • planning a degree of certainty for the
initiatives within the sector and be construction industry by introducing,
the subject of consultation during the subject to consultation, a cycle of
summer of 2008. three yearly reviews of Building
Regulations68, rather than the current
continual changes, which will help
industry’s forward planning.
JUNE 2008

68 In the context of this Strategy, references to

Building Regulations apply to England and Wales.
69 The Future of Building Control: Consultation Paper.
Published by Department for Communities and
Local Government, March 2008, see: www.tinyurl.

Actions and • Following a commitment in the
recently published Enterprise
Deliverables Strategy, Enterprise: unlocking the
UK’s talent71 all new regulatory
The Actions & Deliverables requirements will be examined to
required to meet this overarching assess whether small firms can be
target are reflected in individual exempted from or be subject to
Government Departmental plans70. simplified enforcement. If this is
New construction-specific initiatives not possible for legal or policy
have not been introduced and so a reasons departments will seek to
table of Actions and Deliverables has work with small firms to design
not been presented in this chapter. specific approaches for them.
The Government will also consult
on the introduction of a new
Future Work system of “regulatory budgets”
for departments which will
• Any new policy will have risk provide a means of controlling
based evidence to support its the totality of new costs from the
implementation, and will be regulation Government introduces
informed by consultation and over a period.
Impact Assessment. Any new
regulation will be proportionate, • Regulation will be supported by high
transparent, accountable, quality and timely guidance, and
consistent and targeted, and will effective communication of change.
not produce perverse incentives • Regular Government reviews

or unintended consequences. will be conducted to examine

how to improve compliance,
maintain safeguards and keep
people well-informed, while
reducing costs and administration
wherever possible.

70 www.tinyurl.com/5g2zr4 71 www.tinyurl.com/2mhpkp
JUNE 2008


Climate Change

Reducing total UK carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by at least 60% on

1990 levels by 2050 and by at least 26% by 2020. Within this, Government
has already set out its policy that new homes will be zero carbon from 2016,
and an ambition that new schools, public sector non-domestic buildings
and other non-domestic buildings will be zero carbon from 2016, 2018 and
2019 respectively.

In response to the threat of climate change, the Government
has already committed to a number of actions including
setting legally binding CO2 reduction targets, and will
introduce five year carbon budgets through the Climate
Change Bill72. Other actions are included in the Planning
JUNE 2008

White Paper73 and the Energy White Paper74 to be taken

forward by the Planning Reform and Energy Bills respectively,
the Housing Green Paper Policy package75 and Planning Policy

Statements (PPS)76. The PPS Climate Change, as a supplement

to PPS1: Delivering Sustainable Development, is of particular
significance in ensuring that tackling climate change becomes
a primary objective of the planning system.

72 www.tinyurl.com/25j33o
73 www.tinyurl.com/yukna5
74 www.tinyurl.com/594gr3
75 www.tinyurl.com/2gsgoo
76 www.tinyurl.com/ydw9ch
All products used in the construction 8
industry have embodied environmental


impacts - whether from raw materials,
manufacture or transportation.
The amount of embodied carbon is
generally far less than the energy
consumed during the lifetime of the
building or infrastructure project.
Nevertheless, embodied carbon is
addressed in the BRE Green Guide to
There are also the commitments to Specification78 and the EU Emissions
Building Regulations70 and the Code Trading Scheme encourages materials
for Sustainable Homes46 to deliver manufacturers to reduce emissions.
increasing levels of energy efficiency
of homes over the coming decade,
with the target for all new homes to
be zero carbon from 2016. It is also the
Existing Buildings
Government’s ambition that all new In terms of the built environment,
public sector buildings will be zero it is the existing building stock that
carbon from 2018, and all new non- accounts for by far the most carbon
domestic buildings will be zero carbon emissions and where the greatest
from 201914. The feasibility of these opportunities for savings can be found.
ambitions is currently being explored Buildings that pre-date 1985, when
and will be subject to consultation energy efficiency was first introduced
later in 2008. to the Regulations, are on average 31
particularly energy inefficient.
The Department for Innovation,
Universities and Skills (DIUS) sponsored Given that around two thirds of the
Learning and Skills Council has building stock that will still be standing
announced that all new college buildings in 2050 has already been built,
will be zero carbon by 201677. DIUS has improving the energy efficiency of the
also announced over £30m of capital existing stock will be a critical element
funding for the Higher Education Funding in delivering the Government’s long
Council for England (HEFCE) in the term carbon emission reduction targets.
2008 grant letter that will enable them Many of the technologies that are
to launch their Revolving Green Fund

needed to make significant energy

- supporting invest-to-save projects to savings in the existing stock are already
make universities more energy efficient. cost-effective and widely available.
And the Department for Children, Schools The challenge for Government and
and Families (DCSF) is establishing a task industry is to put in place policies,
force to determine whether new school programmes and products that will roll
buildings could be zero carbon from 2016. out those technologies in a way that will
That task force will release its first report take us towards our long term carbon
by the end of 2008. reduction targets.

78 Further details on The BRE Green Guide to

77 www.tinyurl.com/4jfe4w Specification can be found at: www.tinyurl.com/6jx4lu
JUNE 2008

The Government has consistently Warm Front82 and Decent Homes83.

recognized this challenge and has These are expected to deliver
in place a wide range of mutually reductions in emissions from existing
reinforcing policies and programmes homes of around 23MtCO2 by 2020
which are designed to tackle emissions and represent a total investment by
from the existing stock. This policy Government and energy companies of
framework comprises of: over £1 billion a year.
• minimum standards for building The above policies mean that carbon
work on existing homes; reductions from existing buildings
are on a trajectory consistent with our
• action to inform, support and
2020 targets. However, Government
incentivise those who are prepared/
fully recognizes the importance of a
able to change their behaviour and/or
strategic approach that continues to
take action in their own homes;
deliver savings beyond 2020. That
• obligations on energy suppliers to is why, for example, Government is
realise energy and carbon savings exploring policies which go beyond
from their customers; current mainstream programmes – for
example the green neighbourhoods
32 • financial incentives to tackle issues programme84 announced by Defra,
such as split incentives, encourage which will demonstrate what can be
innovation and improve the uptake of achieved in ‘hard to treat’ homes at a
low and zero carbon technologies; neighbourhood scale. Government will
• action to ensure that the most also continue to look closely at what can
vulnerable in society - those who be done to make best use of levers such
are least likely to be able to improve as Energy Performance Certificates82
their own homes and those who are to improve the most inefficient homes.
most likely to suffer from fuel poverty This includes difficult to treat and hard
- are assisted. to target homes, including those in the
rented sector.
JUNE 2008

Specific schemes include the

introduction of energy efficiency The Government will continue to
requirements for thermal elements analyse such issues in preparing
into the Building Regulations70 and its response to the Climate Change

key programmes such as the Carbon Committee’s carbon budgets by spring

Emissions Reduction Target (CERT)79, 2009 and will announce any additional
the introduction of Energy Performance policies and programmes in this area
Certificates80, the Energy Saving in light of these budgets.
Trust’s Act on CO2 advice line81,

79 www.tinyurl.com/26sm48 82 www.energysavingtrust.org.uk
80 www.tinyurl.com/36rgk5 83 www.tinyurl.com/5banqt
81 www.energysavingtrust.org.uk 84 www.tinyurl.com/6grq8l


Actions and Deliverables
List of Actions & Deliverables Body Timescale
which contribute to the Responsible
Overarching Target for each action/

All new homes to be zero carbon from 2016, with CLG 2016
Building Regulations70 locking in improvements in
2010 and 201387.

Consultation on programme and timetable for achieving CLG Summer 2008

zero carbon non-domestic buildings by 2019.

Establish a task force to establish whether new school DCSF 2008

buildings could be zero carbon from 2016. 33
The Carbon Reduction Commitment will apply Defra 2010
mandatory emissions trading to cut carbon emissions
from large commercial and public sector organisations
by 1.1 million tonnes of Carbon (MtC) per year by 2020.

Departments to increase their energy efficiency per All Government 2010

square metre by 15% by 2010 and 30% by 202088 . Departments (SDC

Reduce carbon emissions on the central Government All Government 2010/11

office estate by 12.5% by 2010/11 and 30% by 2020 Departments
relative to 1999/2000 levels28 . (SDC monitoring)

Central Government’s office estate to be carbon All Government 2012

neutral by 201228 . Departments
85 87 (SDC monitoring)

8615%reduction in carbon emissions from construction Strategic Forum 2012 - Aim

processes and associated transport compared to to establish
2008 levels. mechanism for

85 www.tinyurl.com/2gsgoo 87 Sustainable Development Commission is

86 UK government Sustainable Procurement monitoring via annual Sustainable Development
Action Plan, 2007 See: www.tinyurl.com/yp9dsc in Government Reports
JUNE 2008

Measurement Future Work

and Reporting The Committee on Climate Change is
required to report its findings on the
The Committee on Climate Change: review of the 2050 target and provide
a new independent, expert body being advice on the level of the first three
established by the Climate Change carbon budgets (covering the period
Bill will advise the Government on the 2008-2022) by 1 December 2008. The
optimum pathway to the 2050 target. Government will announce the carbon
The Committee will report annually budgets alongside Budget 2009,
to Parliament on progress towards together with proposals and policies for
budgets and targets. The Committee meeting them.
is currently (June 2008) operating in
“shadow” form ahead of Royal Assent In light of these requirements, a
34 of the Bill and has begun work on the Government wide project has been set
statutory review of the 2050 target and up to provide Ministers with the advice
will report by 1 December 2008. they require to set and meet the first
three carbon budgets. This will include
The Sustainable Development consideration of:
Commission: provides an independent
assessment of the performance of • The technical potential for the cost
Government departments against effective abatement across a range
the targets for the Sustainable of sectors;
Operations of the Government Estate88,
• Possible budget scenarios and gap
and publishes annual Sustainable
Development in Government Reports89.
JUNE 2008

The latest report was published on 18th • Further policies and measures for
March 200890. reducing emissions; and
• Carbon accounting and budget


88 www.tinyurl.com/4jt6xe
89 www.tinyurl.com/3lbu5a
90 www.tinyurl.com/5zlo84


Government will be consulting later Government will be publishing a
in 2008 on options for improving consultation later in 2008 on the rules
the energy performance of new that should underpin the zero carbon
non-domestic buildings. This follows definition for new homes.
the Chancellor’s announcement in the
The Carbon Reduction Commitment
2008 Budget that the Government’s
(CRC), beginning in 2010, will apply
ambition is to achieve zero carbon new
mandatory emissions trading to
non-domestic buildings by 2019.
cut carbon emissions from large
Government will be consulting early in commercial and public sector
2009 on the amendments to Building organisations (including supermarkets,
Regulations70 necessary to deliver hotel chains, all Government
the next steps in improving energy departments, large Local Authorities)
efficiency improvements from all by at least 1.1 MtC / year by 2020. This
buildings in 2010. commitment will affect the construction 35
sector directly (by targeting emissions
Government is considering what further
from construction companies whose
measures may be needed to reduce
emissions are large enough to be
the carbon emissions from existing
included in the CRC) and indirectly
buildings as part of its wider strategies
(by influencing the demand for lower
on improving energy efficiency
carbon buildings by CRC participants).
generally, and for renewable energy and
The industry will have the opportunity
renewable and low carbon heat. These
to comment on the proposed
include a range of ideas which industry
regulations as part of a consultation
has been proposing and will cover
later in 200891.
emissions from both domestic and

non-domestic buildings.
As part of the consideration of existing
buildings, Government will look at
ways in which the energy efficiency of
existing non-domestic buildings might
be improved. During 2008 English
Heritage is launching a research
project to measure the energy use and
embodied energy of Victorian terraced
homes and to lead the enhanced advice
on the cost-effectiveness of various
energy-saving measures.
91 For full details see: www.tinyurl.com/3nb69c
JUNE 2008

9 Climate

36 To develop a robust approach to adaptation to climate

change, shared across Government. (Comprehensive
Spending Review 2007, Public Service Agreement (PSA)
27: Tackling Climate Change)92.

JUNE 2008

In the UK, we can expect future changes to seasonal rainfall

(wetter winters and drier summers), higher temperatures,
rising sea levels and coastal erosion. It is also expected that

the UK is likely to experience increased extreme events, such

as high winds, heavy prolonged rainfall, flooding, drought
and heat waves93. All of these have direct impacts – but also
secondary ones, such as the stability and moisture of soils.

92 www.tinyurl.com/44fuml
93 www.tinyurl.com/42nzuj


It is essential that we build the Government has issued PPS Climate
potential for adaptation into design and Change as a supplement to PPS1:
construction methods – whether this Delivering Sustainable Development
is new development, refurbishment or to ensure that tackling climate change
regeneration. Green Infrastructure94, becomes a primary objective of the
for instance, has a key role to play in planning system, helping to speed up
ensuring developments are resilient the shift to renewable and low-carbon
and adaptable to the likely impacts of energy, supporting its ambitions on
climate change. Government is helping zero carbon development and helping
to shape places resilient to the impact to shape places resilient to the impact
of climate change95 and is also looking of climate change. PPS25 Development
at what levers might be used to provide and Flood Risk helps planners to avoid,
greater adaptability when buildings manage and reduce future flood risk
are built or altered. This includes to communities through the location,
looking at ventilation and limiting the layout and design of development.
effects of solar gain alongside energy There is draft practice guidance
efficiency in Building Regulations70, to supporting the PPS on climate change96
avoid buildings with higher levels of and a Practice Guide supporting PPS25.
energy efficiency overheating in our
warming climate. Government is also
Through the Climate Change Bill97, 37
the Government is putting in place a
improving the standards of efficiency
national framework for tackling climate
of water fittings through Water Fittings
change impacts and is continuing to
Regulations, Building Regulations70 and
fund research in this area – notably
the Code for Sustainable Homes46.
through the Hadley Centre and UK
Delivery of adaptable developments Climate Impacts Programme98.
and urban environments, including the
refurbishment of existing buildings and
infrastructure, will require improved
skills and multi-disciplinary working.
The Sector Skills Councils and the

appropriate professional bodies will

therefore be working with industry and
skills providers to ensure that both new
entrants and existing professionals
have developed the skills necessary
to respond to climate change and
keep pace with policy and technology

96 www.tinyurl.com/552n3q
94 www.greeninfrastructure.co.uk 97 www.tinyurl.com/25j33o
95 www.tinyurl.com/ypdd2y 98 www.tinyurl.com/6fde79
JUNE 2008

Actions and Deliverables

List of Actions & Deliverables Body Timescale
which contribute to the Responsible
Overarching Target for each action/

Adaptation Policy Framework: National Policy Defra/Government 2008


National Programme on Adaptation. Defra/Government 2011

UK Risk Assessment. Defra/Government 2011

Regional spatial and Economic strategies to take Regional ongoing

account of adaptation. Planning Bodies
and Regional

Reviews of Building Regulations70 which will include CLG Ongoing, periodic

consideration of impacts such as temperature change reviews planned
and flooding. for every three
38 years

Review of water fittings Regulations to maximize Defra 2009

water efficiency

and Reporting
A range of measures is in place to report on the actions
JUNE 2008

and deliverables. These include the Local Government

Performance Framework99, scrutiny by the Committee on
Climate Change and the assessment, led by Defra, of UK
climate change risks, which is reported to Parliament. There

is also the biannual reporting (annual report and Autumn

Performance Report) led by Defra on the Public Service
Agreement (PSA) target on Climate Change100.

99 www.tinyurl.com/4l2xmf
100 www.tinyurl.com/4o54p2


Future Work • Government is also looking at what
opportunities might exist to provide
The Government’s programme on greater resilience and resistance
improving the knowledge of climate to climate change impacts, such as
change and its impacts is developing, flooding, when buildings are built
and it is an issue that the Government or altered, e.g. through Building
takes seriously. It is vital that other Regulations70;
stakeholder organisations – including • Within the context of delivering the
trade and professional bodies – are Government’s Strategy for Trees,
properly engaged and recognize their Woods and Forests, the Forestry
roles and responsibilities and the part Commission will continue to develop
they can all play in this. Many have the contribution which trees, woods
begun this process – others need to and forests can make to sustainable
develop their understanding. housing growth, including climate 39
For the Government’s part: change adaptation;

• The UK Climate Impacts Programme • Through the publication of Future

08 is due to be available in November Water101: the Government’s
2008. This will help organisations water Strategy for England, the
adapt to inevitable climate change; Government is placing climate
change adaptation at the heart of
• The Government will be publishing water policy development;
the Adaptation Policy Framework
document once the Climate Change • The Government is developing
Bill’s provisions are confirmed; a portfolio of possible options STRATEGY FOR SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION
for facilitating the adoption of
• The Climate Change Bill will allow for sustainable flood and coastal erosion
a statutory National Risk Assessment risk management approaches to
to be developed, and a programme of enable communities to adapt to both
action flowing from this; short term and longer term changes,
working with natural processes
where possible.

101 Future Water, the Government’s water

Strategy for England, Defra, February 2008,
see: www.tinyurl.com/ynk96x for further details
JUNE 2008



To assist with the Future Water101 vision to reduce per

capita consumption of water in the home through cost
40 effective measures, to an average of 130 litres per person
per day by 2030, or possibly even 120 litres per person
per day depending on new technological developments
and innovation.

JUNE 2008

Future Water, the Government’s Water Strategy for

England101 was published in February 2008 and sets out the
Government’s vision for the water sector by 2030. Future

Water maps out how the above overarching target of reducing

domestic water usage to 130 litres per person per day, can be
achieved from a current estimate of 150 litres of water used by
every person in Britain per day102.

102 See page 14 of the OFWAT 2006/07 Security of Supply report

See: www.tinyurl.com/5dkls9

Household water demand accounts The Government as client is leading
for more than half of all public water the way. From April 2008, water use
supply use in England and Wales, and in all new domestic property financed
many of the new homes to be built in by Government must reach level three
the next decades are in areas currently of the Code for Sustainable Homes46,
designated as water-stressed; hence, equal to 105 litres per person per day.
encouraging efficient water use in This will allow flexibility about the
the home is crucial. The Government choice of individual water fittings whilst
is introducing Building Regulations70 still enabling the achievement of an
to improve the water efficiency of overall performance level for the home.
new homes from April 2009. This will
The Water Saving Group105, chaired by
require a whole building standard of
the Minister for the Enviroment, has
125 litres per person per day. It has also
led the work to reduce the demand
integrated water usage targets into the
Code for Sustainable Homes46 and will
for water in households in England. 41
Established in 2005, the group
be working to encourage wider uptake
brings together key water industry
of the Code over the coming years103.
organisations in order to combine their
One method to encourage households skills and experience to work together
to save water is to install a water meter. on a package of measures to promote
Changes to legislation in 2007 will allow the efficient use of water in households.
companies in areas of serious water The Group is currently (2008) reviewing
stress to install meters in households, water efficiency measures in the
where there is a resource case to do so. industrial and commercial sector, and
Government will be commissioning an is also working with BSI and others
independent review of metering and to develop a code of practice for

water charging that will look at how non-potable water use in rainwater
to progress metering beyond current harvesting systems.

103 The Code for Sustainable Homes, Setting the standard

in sustainability for new homes, Communities and
Local Government, February 2008. Available at:
104 Paragraph 28, Page 12, Future Water, the Government’s
water Strategy for England, Defra, February 2008, 105 See www.tinyurl.com/5vqse8 for further details
www.tinyurl.com/ynk96x of this group
JUNE 2008

The Department for Communities and In due course, there may be European
Local Government (CLG) is currently standards and labelling schemes
undertaking a study into the water for some categories of water using
efficiency of new non-domestic products, as the European Commission
buildings, including the possibilities for develops proposals to take forward
whole building performance standards the measures in its Communication on
for non-domestic buildings. Water Scarcity and Drought106. Defra will
continue to work with the Commission
Over the coming year (2008/9), Defra and other Member States on the
will consult on revisions to the Water proposals, including the establishment
Supply (Water Fittings) Regulations. of minimum water efficiency standards
These regulations set out the maximum for products such as dishwashers and
permitted water usage of toilets, urinals, washing machines via the Framework
washing machines and dishwashers. Directive for the Eco-design for Energy
The review will consider enforcement Using Products107. Defra will encourage
issues, advances in technical standards the Commission to do the same for
and water conservation, and the case other water using products within
42 for setting new performance standards its wider proposals for eco-design
for key water using fittings. Subject to requirements under the Integrated
consultation, any revised regulations Product Policy Framework108.
will be issued in 2009. These will work
alongside the new Building Regulations In early 2008, Defra completed a
for water efficiency of new homes by consultation on improving surface
discouraging the replacement of water water drainage, which incorporated
efficient fittings installed in new homes a discussion regarding the future
by ones that use more water, and will development of Sustainable Drainage
work to improve water efficiency in Systems (SUDS). The uncertainty
existing and non-domestic buildings. surrounding the responsibility for the
JUNE 2008

ownership and long term maintenance

of SUDS constitutes one of the key
barriers to their implementation
on a wider scale. The consultation

considered potential options for

resolving this uncertainty. Defra will
publish a summary of the responses
to the consultation in July 2008 and a
Government response is anticipated
later in the year.

106 www.tinyurl.com/4tjeao
107 www.tinyurl.com/ya9543
108 See: www.tinyurl.com/5g5jor for details
of this framework

Actions and Deliverables
List of Actions & Deliverables Body Responsible Timescale
which contribute to the for each action/
Overarching Target deliverable

All new homes built with English Partnerships English Partnerships, From April 2010
and Housing Corporation support to meet Code Housing Corporation38
for Sustainable Homes Level 3 standards for and CLG
water efficiency (from April 2008), and (subject to
funding) Level 4 standards from 2011 (105 litres
per person per day).

Development of standards for non-potable Water Saving Group/ Standard in place

water use. BSI for rainwater
harvesting systems
by the end of 2008.

Defra will review the Water Supply (Water Fittings) Defra 2009
Regulations 1999 in 2008 with a view to setting
new performance standards for key fittings.

A reduction in water consumption to an average All Government Ongoing

of 3 cubic metres per person per year for all new Departments
office builds or major office refurbishments on the (SDC monitoring89)
Government Estate.

Reduce water consumption by 25% on the All Government 2020

office and non-office estate by 2020 relative Departments
to 2004/5 levels. (SDC monitoring)

Water usage in the manufacturing and Strategic Forum 2012 - Sample

construction phase to be reduced by 20% surveys of water
compared to 2008 usage. usage measured
by water metering

Introduction of changes to Building Regulation to CLG From 2009

improve the water efficiency of new homes, with a
whole building performance standard of 125 litres
per person per day.
JUNE 2008

Measurement Future Work

and Reporting • As announced in Future Water101,
the Government will commission
The Government’s progress
an independent review to advise on
towards the targets regarding
how metering and charging should
water efficiency in its own estate progress beyond the
is monitored by the Sustainable existing arrangements.
Development Commission (SDC).
• Defra will respond to the consultation
Progress towards the ambition to
on SUDS by end of 2008.
reduce per capita consumption to an
average of 130 litres per person • CLG will conduct research and
per day by 2030 will be tracked through analysis looking at how a whole
the information water companies building performance standard might
44 submit annually to Ofwat, which is be used and improve water efficiency
published in Ofwat’s annual Security for non-domestic buildings.
of Supply report109.
• Defra will continue to work with the
European Commission and other
Member States on the proposals to
establish minimum water efficiency
standards for products such as
dishwashers and washing
machines, via the Framework
Directive for the Eco-design for
JUNE 2008

Energy Using Products.


109 www.tinyurl.com/5e99q9

That the conservation and enhancement of biodiversity
within and around construction sites is considered
throughout all stages of a development.


The UK Biodiversity Action Plan was published in 1994 as

part of the UK Government’s response to the Convention on
Biological Diversity110 signed at Rio de Janeiro in 1992. Since
the Rio de Janeiro meeting, Heads of State at the United
Nations World Summit on Sustainable Development in
2002 committed themselves to achieve by 2010 a significant
reduction in the current rate of biodiversity loss. The European
Union has gone further, agreeing in 2001 that biodiversity
decline should be halted with the aim of reaching this
objective by 2010.

110 See: www.cbd.int for further details

JUNE 2008

From a public policy point of view the planning system is

an important tool in biodiversity conservation. Planning
authorities have the power to prevent developments that are
damaging to biodiversity, to secure biodiversity enhancement
through attaching conditions or to defer decisions until more
information is available. Additionally, planning authorities
have a statutory duty to “further” or “have regard to” the
conservation of biodiversity in the exercise of their planning
functions. This includes an obligation to consider protected
species, protected sites and species and habitats of
primary importance.
In England, Planning Policy Statement 9111 sets out the
Government’s policy on protection of biodiversity through
the planning system. It is against this background that the
46 construction industry has set the above target.

Actions and Deliverables

List of Actions & Deliverables Body Responsible Timescale
which contribute to the for each action/
Overarching Target deliverable

All construction projects over £1m to have Strategic Forum 2012

biodiversity surveys carried out and necessary
JUNE 2008

actions instigated.

Biodiversity Toolkit for planners and local Defra/CLG/ALGE114 Summer 2008

biodiversity officers. and Statutory nature

conservation agencies

Set up a cross-sectoral workshop and task group UK Green Building End of 2008
to develop a roadmap for the industry to maintain Council
and enhance biodiversity in support of the target.

111 www.tinyurl.com/65nyfz
112 Association of Local Government Ecologists

Measurement Examples of key themes are:

and Reporting • The role of Planning Guidance

in implementing Green
The overarching target will be measured Infrastructure113 initiatives;
through a sample survey of projects. • The role of training throughout the
The UK Green Building Council’s supply chain;
cross-sectoral workshop will develop a • The development of simple guidance
roadmap and will report on progress by and quick wins providing clarity and
the end of 2008. coherence to support the industry.
Furthermore, CIRIA intend114 to develop
Future Work guidance on enhancement of biodiversity
within large civil infrastructure projects.
The responses to the consultation This will provide those involved in
on the draft Strategy highlighted large civil infrastructure projects
a number of areas where industry with the techniques and opportunities
indicated that further work should be for biodiversity conservation
undertaken to support the enhancement and enhancement. 47
of biodiversity. In addition, the joint
As noted in the above table, the
BERR/ Defra Biodiversity in Construction
Association of Local Government
workshop of November 2007 identified
Ecologists and the Planning Portal115
some ideas and actions that the
are collaborating on a web-based
industry could take to raise awareness
Biodiversity Toolkit for planners
and improve the ecological impact of
and local biodiversity officers. The
construction. The UK Green Building
toolkit will offer guidance and advice
Council will take responsibility for
on handling forward planning and
setting up a cross-sectoral industry
development control matters in relation
workshop and manage a time-limited
to biodiversity. The guidance will focus

task group to develop a roadmap for the

on species and habitats and link to key
industry and its clients to maintain and
legislation and policy as well as other
enhance the biodiversity of the
third party information resources. The
built environment in support of the
toolkit will be delivered through the
above target.
Planning Portal117 and will be available
from summer 2008.

113 www.greeninfrastructure.co.uk
114 www.tinyurl.com/4qe2ca
115 www.planningportal.gov.uk
JUNE 2008


By 2012, a 50% reduction of construction, demolition and

excavation (CD&E) waste to landfill compared to 2008.

This 2012 target, agreed by the Strategic Forum for

Construction, does not include aggregates used for
backfilling quarries, site restoration or legitimately
JUNE 2008

spread on exempt sites. For limited types of CD&E waste,

landfill is likely to remain the least environmentally
damaging option. Further work over the next few years

on, for example, life cycle assessments, increased

capacity and alternative disposal options, will allow
industry to assess better how much more ambitious
it could be beyond 2012 and how close we might get
to ending the disposal of CD&E waste in landfill in the

The construction industry in England waste production. These include
uses around 400 million tonnes of the landfill tax, the standard rate
materials every year. Around 90 million of which for non-inert material will
tonnes of CD&E inert waste is produced, increase to £48/tonne in 2010/11, the
with half of this recycled as aggregates, aggregates levy which encourages
including at the site of production. the use of recycled rather than virgin
Estimates suggest at least a further 20 materials, new legislation making Site
million tonnes of non-inert and mixed Waste Management Plans (SWMPs)
CD&E waste is also produced annually. mandatory for construction projects in
The overarching target focuses on the England worth over £300,000 and the
total amount of CD&E waste being Code for Sustainable Homes46 against
disposed of via landfill, estimated which ratings were made mandatory for
at over 25 million tonnes a year in all new homes from May 2008118.
England. Work is underway via Defra’s
Waste Data Strategy116 to strengthen
In order to meet the challenging target 49
of halving CD&E waste to landfill by
understanding of CD&E waste
2012 (as a result of reduction, reuse,
production, recovery and disposal. With
recycling and recovery) complementary,
data expected to be more robust in 2008
action by industry will be needed
than previous years, this is taken as the
through all elements of the supply
baseline year for measuring progress
chain. While the overarching target
towards the 2012 target.
of halving waste to landfill may not
Given the scale of the construction automatically translate at a sector or
industry’s resource use and the quantity individual business level, all of the
of CD&E waste entering landfill, the actions detailed below will provide an
important contribution to cutting CD&E
Waste Strategy for England 2007117
identified construction waste as a waste to landfill. In addition, some
priority sector for action. A number of companies have already set their own
fiscal and legislative tools are already challenging waste targets based on a
driving up resource efficiency in the clearly demonstrated business case.
construction sector and driving down

118 Implementing a SWMP is a mandatory element

116 www.tinyurl.com/5w6a96 of the Code, and credits are available for waste
117 www.tinyurl.com/39rxgb reduction and recovery actions.
JUNE 2008

Actions and Deliverables

List of Actions & Deliverables Body Responsible Timescale
which contribute to the for each action/
Overarching Target deliverable

Construction Waste Commitment: Waste & Resources Formal Launch in

individual organisations commit to waste to Action Programme September 2008,
landfill targets119 at company level. (WRAP), working with then ongoing
client and contractor
sector bodies and
Government Estate

Develop guidance on waste reduction for National Federation of By 2009

50 small builders. Builders (working with
WRAP & Envirowise)

Sector resource efficiency plans prepared and Construction Three begun

implemented by trade associations. Products Association* by end 2008

Setting an overall target of diversion of National Federation By 2009

demolition waste from landfill. of Demolition

Extension of Plasterboard Voluntary Agreement Construction Resources By 2009

to rest of the supply chain. and Waste Platform and
JUNE 2008


20% reduction in construction packaging waste. Construction Products By 2012


119 Companies may commit to higher and earlier targets

than the national target for 2012. The Construction
Waste Commitment includes setting procurement
requirements for good practice and measuring and
reporting performance.

Measurement Future Work
and Reporting Even if all agreed actions are met,
there will still be a large amount of
Sector level organisations(*) will CD&E waste arising from construction
monitor delivery of actions for which activities, with landfill likely to remain
they are responsible and progress a necessary outlet for significant
against their own commitments and quantities of CD&E waste beyond
targets, collating aggregated data 2012. Reducing these quantities will
from individual businesses where require an integrated supply chain
appropriate. Similarly, WRAP will approach which addresses both waste
co-ordinate progress against the minimisation and recovery.
Construction Waste Commitment.
Measurement of the overall volumes Defra, in conjunction with a new
of CD&E waste going to landfill will be construction waste group representing 51
conducted by Defra, drawing on all sectors of the industry along with
a range of available data sources WRAP and Envirowise, will look at the
including the CLG aggregates survey, following areas for further work:
landfill operator returns and other data
• incorporating waste minimisation
streams identified in the Waste Data
principles into building design and
Hub Strategy120.
throughout the supply chain;
• improving our knowledge base via
life cycle assessments of construction
products and encouraging them to STRATEGY FOR SUSTAINABLE CONSTRUCTION

be used efficiently;
• obtaining better waste data
and evidence;
• developing and rolling out necessary
tools; and
• improving take back or exchange
opportunities for unwanted and
waste materials.

120 www.tinyurl.com/5v8p8n
JUNE 2008



That the materials used in construction have the least

environmental and social impact as is feasible both
socially and economically.

The rapidly increasing demand for greener buildings
provides both challenges and opportunities in relation to the
materials used. Accurate, accessible and timely information
on the environmental and social impact of using different
materials is increasingly desired by designers, contractors and
JUNE 2008

procurers. The 2006 Code for Sustainable Homes46 awards

credits based on the environmental impact of materials and
for materials responsibly sourced121. The aim in doing so is
to encourage the use of materials with lower environmental

impacts over their lifecycle and to recognize and encourage

the specification of responsibly sourced materials for basic
building and finishing components.

121 A Responsible Sourcing Scheme is a documented set of criteria setting out the
obligations of an organization in managing the supply of construction products
in accordance with a set of agreed principles of sustainability.

As a result of significant work in the Enforcement, Governance and Trade
1990s funded by Government, the initiative122. Other material sectors
Building Research establishment are now beginning to think about
(BRE) and the manufacturing trades establishing responsible sourcing
associations, developed a system for schemes with input from relevant
Environmental Profiling of construction stakeholders and establishing
products and common building performance levels.
elements (later incorporated into the
There is now a growing industry
BRE Green Guide to Specification80).
emerging using renewable construction
More recently, the surge in demand
materials which in the right context,
for greener construction products is
can deliver buildings with enhanced
stimulating the manufacturing sector
environmental properties – for example
to invest and innovate in the hope
through performance in use (energy
of capturing more market share as
procurers adopt more sustainable
consumption, thermal properties, 53
ease of maintenance) and at “end of
procurement policies.
life” (how the material is recycled,
Government, through the policy of recovered or disposed). However,
procuring only legal and sustainable further work is needed to gain a better
timber and timber products has, for this understanding of the overall impacts of
material, altered the market demand using such materials - from the growing
and changed the behaviour of the and processing of the raw materials,
timber trade. From the 1st of April 2009, through to the decommissioning
all timber and timber products used on and disposal stages. Government
the Government estate must be from is investing in this area through the
legal and sustainable sources Defra Renewables and Low Carbon

or licensed under the EU Forest Law programme in collaboration with BERR123.

122 In Europe, CEN (TC350) has been mandated to develop

voluntary standards to address the application of life
cycle methodologies to the environmental performance
assessment of construction products and buildings.
123 www.tinyurl.com/3s8fe4
JUNE 2008

A fuller understanding of the As a pilot project, in collaboration

sustainability of materials entails with relevant industry partners, the
consideration of a complex and Sustainable Products and Materials
interconnected set of environmental, Division124 within Defra , has begun
economic and social factors. work on three construction product
Considerable work is now underway roadmaps (plasterboard, window
through a variety of initiatives, both systems and toilets), among ten
public and private, to develop tools to products being considered overall. The
aid industry to lower its impact across intention of the roadmaps is to collect
a broader range of environmental evidence about impacts of the products
and social issues. Particular emphasis across the full product lifecycle, to
has been placed on attempting to identify and prioritise any particular
understand better which parts of the problems and then develop the most
life cycle have the greatest impacts, and effective solutions for improving
54 where and how interventions can be sustainability. The Progress Report on
focused to improve the environmental Sustainable Products and Materials, to
and social performance of products and be published by Defra in Summer 2008,
services. will outline the work to date and discuss
a vision of the future125. Other tools are
being developed by BRE and industry.
JUNE 2008

124 The Sustainable Products and Materials Division was

established in September 2007. Its aim is to:
• focus attention on high impact products and services
• encourage business and consumers to take account
of the full range of lifecycle environmental impacts
• drive solutions that achieve environmental
and economic benefits through improving
resource efficiency
125 Progress Report on Sustainable Products and
Materials, Defra, June 2008, available
at: www.tinyurl.com/5765k5
Actions and Deliverables 13

List of Actions & Deliverables Body Responsible Timescale
which contribute to the for each action/
Overarching Target deliverable

Pilot product roadmaps to assess impacts of Government and Initial mapping

products across the full product lifecycle, to relevant industry supply exercises -
identify and prioritise any particular problems chain partners completed summer
and then develop the most effective solutions 2008; agreement
for improving sustainability. on next steps -
second half of 2008

Finalising Framework Standards to facilitate Construction Products 2008 / 2009

the development of sector Responsible Association with BRE
Sourcing schemes. and BSI

25% of products used in construction Strategic Forum 2012 - Sample

projects to be from schemes recognized for survey of products
responsible sourcing. used in projects.

To develop means of improving access for Construction Products 2008 - 2010

designers to product Life Cycle Inventory Association / BRE/
information. designers and other
certification bodies


Measurement Future Work

and Reporting The development of roadmaps for
improvement, framework standards
Considerable further work needs to be for responsible sourcing and improved
done to decide on the best means of access to Life Cycle Assessment
measuring the uptake of sustainable information, will provide essential
products within the building sector. next steps towards further improving
The development of the standards the sustainability of materials used in

for responsible sourcing is currently construction. Government and industry

underway by both BRE and the BSI. will collaborate to consider what
additional tools and mechanisms are
needed to promote both increased
use of sustainable materials in
construction and improvements
in materials themselves.
JUNE 2008


and Reporting
The construction industry and Government will have key roles
in implementing this Strategy.

For instance, all 30 The Construction Products

member organisations of Association has embedded
the Construction Industry sustainability thinking
Council (CIC) will be within its organisational
developing and delivering a objectives and is
work programme in support encouraging the industry
JUNE 2008

of sustainable construction. to develop products and

The CIC will also be processes that contribute
developing a Sustainability to a more sustainable built

Charter to which all environment. It convenes

members would be required numerous working groups,
to sign up as a condition of workshops and work
membership. programmes with its
members to take forward
the necessary activities. It
promotes the uptake of
Key Performance Indicator
measurement by its

The UK Green Building Council Regional Development Agencies (RDAs)
(UK-GBC) is working with members and will support this Strategy through
other stakeholders to create a ‘Roadmap strategic alignment and working in
to Sustainability’, a shared vision of partnership with the rest of the public
a sustainable built environment that sector while understanding the needs
provides a path for the industry, its of business. RDAs will:
clients and policy makers to follow126.
• Apply the Common Minimum
CIRIA will provide a means through Standards129 for all construction
which the many different stakeholders works carried out directly or with
in construction can work together to RDA financial support - these include
promote this Strategy throughout the standards set out in the OGC’s
industry. This will be performed using Achieving Excellence23 initiative;
member contacts, networks and events
• Require that where RDA investment
(including CIEF127), where appropriate,
relates to housing development 57
to promote the Government’s targets for
they will require achievement of at
sustainable construction.
least the same levels of the Code
Constructing Excellence will use its for Sustainable Homes46 and
extensive network of organizations complementary housing quality
and businesses from across the built standards now required by English
environment to communicate and Partnerships39;
promote the Strategy. It will also
• Support innovation in partnership
engage its local club network to
with the Technology Strategy Board
promote the Strategy to SMEs and
and align their investments to
regional offices of major players.
achieve this;
To aid uptake of sustainable practise,
the Construction Clients Group has • Support Small and Medium Sized
produced a Plain English Guide to Enterprises with a particular focus
Sustainable Construction128. on resource efficiencies;
• Support sustainable development in
their regions through the Integrated
Regional Strategies;
• Be signatories to the
Construction Commitments130.

126 For details see: www.ukgbc.org

127 Construction Industry Environmental Forum 129 See: www.tinyurl.com/3kou3w for details
128 For details see: www.tinyurl.com/67y8es 130 See: www.strategicforum.org.uk for further details
JUNE 2008

Industry, Government and its agencies The intention is to publish reports on

will continue to work together – progress at two year intervals and to
primarily by the actions outlined in the hold conferences in 2009 and 2011.
preceding chapters. As an example of Targets, actions and deliverables will
activity within the public sector, the be reassessed and refreshed at
Department of Health promotes the these times.
Strategy across the health and social
Constructing Excellence collects the
care sector and has developed the
key performance indicator data for the
BREEAM Healthcare environmental
industry. A number of Key Performance
assessment tool. This is supported by
Indicators are relevant to the chapters
guidance131, to ensure that in future
within the Strategy and would help
NHS healthcare facilities are built and
organisations to measure their
operated in accordance with these
performance against industry averages.
sustainable construction principles.
58 Further information is available at:

Reporting The Sustainable Development

Commission will continue to monitor
and Monitoring the performance of central Government
operations against the targets of
The Strategic Forum for Construction
the Sustainable Operations on the
will be monitoring industry’s progress
Government Estate132; this framework
in regard to the actions and deliverables
covers energy, biodiversity and
contained in this Strategy.
BERR will be undertaking a similar
JUNE 2008

function for actions and deliverables

relating to the public sector.

131 Health Technical Memorandum 07-07 “Sustainable

Social and Healthcare Buildings: planning, design, 132 www.tinyurl.com/4jt6xe
construction and refurbishment” 133 www.sd-commission.org.uk/sdig2007




We would like to express our gratitude to all those involved

in supporting development of this joint Strategy.
In particular, we would like to acknowledge the assistance
of Atkins, the Construction Industry Council, Lafarge and
Skanska UK plc in providing secondees to help formulate
the Strategy; to the Sustainable Construction Task Force on

behalf of the Strategic Forum for Construction for providing a

focus for industry input; and to the Sustainable Development
Commission for guidance and oversight.
JUNE 2008

Copies of the Strategy are available at:
For further information or questions please contact:
Department for Business, Enterprise
& Regulatory Reform
Construction Sector Unit
1 Victoria Street
JUNE 2008

London SW1H 0ET

E-mail: john.newman@berr.gsi.gov.uk

Phone: 020 7215 0994

This strategy is helping to deliver

Printed in the UK on recycled paper containing a minimum of 75% post consumer waste.
Department for Business, Enterprise & Regulatory Reform. www.berr.gov.uk

First published June 2008.

©Crown Copyright. Pub 8731/2k/6/08/NP URN 08/973