Home / Built Environment / Experts call for regulation of embodied carbon emissions in construction

Experts call for regulation of embodied carbon emissions in construction

Leading construction industry and built environment experts from 11 organisations are calling on political party leaders to make manifesto commitments for embodied carbon regulation in the UK.

UK Green Building Council (UKGBC), The Institution of Structural Engineers (IStructE), Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB), Construction Industry Council (CIC), Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE), UK Architects Declare, RIBA, RICS, Association for Consultancy and Engineering (ACE), and Part Z, have joined forces to send a consistent message to UK political party leaders about the urgent need for regulation of embodied carbon emissions in construction.

They assert that this is necessary as buildings and construction form a substantial part of UK carbon emissions, which are a main driver of climate change. UK policy has stalled, and urgent action is needed.

The group of experts has issued a paper to political leaders with a key ask: to include in their manifestoes a commitment to move to reduce embodied carbon emissions in construction within two years of starting government.

Additionally, the experts list specific steps for action:

  • In 2024: Policy signalled confirming the dates and interventions below.
  • By 2026: Mandate the measurement and reporting of whole-life carbon emissions for all projects with a gross internal area of more than 1000m2 or that create more than 10 dwellings.
  • By 2028: Introduce legal limits on the upfront embodied carbon emissions [those emissions due to the use of materials in the initial construction] of such projects, with a view to future revision and tightening as required.

The group says these actions are essential as around one in 10 tonnes of the UK’s total greenhouse gas emissions are “embodied carbon” emissions. These relate to the production and use of construction materials, which account for a substantial part of the UK’s overall carbon emissions.

The authors note that these policy recommendations would be complementary to the ‘carbon pricing mechanism’ announced by the government in 2023 and which are due to be introduced in 2027, as well as to existing UK initiatives that incentivise the use of lower carbon cement and steel.

Facilities Management Journal Survey 2024

At Facilities Management Journal, our commitment is to deliver content that meets the needs and interests of our readers. To ensure we continue to provide valuable insights and engaging articles, we invite you to participate in our Reader Survey.

Your opinion is invaluable in shaping the future direction of our magazine. By sharing your thoughts, preferences, and suggestions, you play a crucial role in enhancing the content and overall experience for our readership.

To access the survey, please click on the following link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/9XVVXYP.

About Sarah OBeirne

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *