The Sustainable Facilities Management Index (SFMI) and BAM FM have officially launched the full open-source guidance for both FM Providers and in-house FM team to measure and engage on business carbon emissions.
SFMI and BAM FM, who announced their partnership last year to drive a decarbonisation standard in FM services have joined forces with an expert industry peer group of businesses to develop a standardised approach to calculate carbon emissions for the sector.
There are 2 connecting methods that offer different intended outcomes:
1. FM outsourced providers to measure corporate greenhouse emissions in an industry comparable way. Helping to compare industry net-zero targets.
2. FM providers and in-house FM teams to identify the operational emissions that they can target within the scope of their work, helping to create bespoke, client-specific zero-carbon pathways.
This project is the first stage of a wider vision where FM will position itself as a key partner in delivering zero-carbon solutions in the built environment. The FM industry needs to build a data set to understand what the true impacts of its emissions are for its customers. This can then be used to promote greenhouse gas (GHG) management in the operational stage of the building lifecycle, thereby promoting FM as a solution for zero-carbon buildings in the future. The vision aims to create a measurement tool for the sector, develop FM service level emission factors based on real-life data for more accurate reporting, and build a sectoral decarbonisation pathway.
This all feeds into the SFMI’s purpose to drive ESG leadership within the FM industry by delivering sustainable services that provide a positive benefit across the value chain.
Sunil Shah, SFMI Founder commented: “An FM’s carbon impact is larger than many will report. This is exacerbated by the explosion of net-zero targets that have been announced by providers. So, many FMs are actively or inadvertently ‘scoping out’ emissions from their inventories to make hitting an arbitrary net-zero target easier. By doing this the industry is not positioning itself as a solution to the problem we have of reducing GHG emissions.”
By creating a standardised approach that FM follows for accounting their emissions, the SFMI says it is assisting the FM sector in taking responsibility for higher emission-causing activities that occur within their delivered services. This will shape their influence in the built environment as sustainable solutions providers.
Net-zero carbon has become a business requirement driven by the global warming impacts, new regulations, and by customers and employees wanting action. Only a minority in the FM industry has seen net-zero as an opportunity to deliver greater value to clients. Many see it as a marketing tool. To truly provide solutions to reach net zero, the industry must understand all the opportunities that it can impact, measure them and then engage with the clients and say “we can reduce these. Let’s talk about how the contract encourages these reductions”. The typical FM contract is one of the key barriers to making reductions, so the SFMI and BAM FM are building the tools to help the industry overcome the challenge.
Measurement of the Scope 3 categories is critical in understanding the impacts from the FM sector and the services provided, and is necessary to allow for decisions in procurement and operations to reduce these impacts.
This project is all about the positioning of FM as a sustainable solution provider and aligning FM with zero carbon agendas.
- FM needs to drive the conversation on the carbon impacts it can deliver and its decarbonisation journey, which will increase the value of FM services.
- When specific services in contracts and their impacts are measured, we can innovate and deliver a decarbonisation journey.
- Relationships will improve across the supply chain as the FM aligns with customer zero-carbon values that are now becoming business imperatives.
BAM FM, a long-time partner of the SFMI, fully recognises the importance of engaging with customers on their zero-carbon journeys. The company has a proven track record of delivering sustainable solutions and has embedded its ‘Net Future Positives’ strategy into its core business values. With BAM’s wide range of service offerings and client bases they make a great partner with the SFMI for this project.
James Wimpenny CEO BAM UK commented: “As a leading company in our sector, we know we need to be more efficient and get our own operations to net zero. We can also make an even bigger impact by helping clients remove carbon from their existing estates and future buildings, both in terms of how they operate, and the materials used to build and maintain them.”
As part of the project, the SFMI has built a critical review panel that combines industry groups such as RICS, IWFM and IEMA, with in-house FM teams, and outsourced FM providers to ensure that the approach will have industry acceptance. As a customer-focused industry, this will give FM the tools to communicate and adapt its services to reduce its impact by being accountable and responsible for emissions stemming from within the services it delivers.
To download ‘Scope 3 emissions in FM: Setting the foundations for net zero’ click here.
This webinar will look at how outsourcing is a cost-effective and highly relevant strategy to not only counter the race for talent, but to build greater agility, expertise, infrastructure and resource into business. In particular it will acknowledge the operational challenges facing FMs as the UK starts its return to the workplace.
To register for the webinar click here.