Radical reform needed for 40-year low carbon plan

Aaron Morby 13 years ago

Construction tsar Paul Morrell has called for a radical reform programme and tighter partnership between industry and Government to deliver ambitious low carbon plans.

Launching his long-awaited report into how construction can deliver a low carbon economy, he warned the industry faces the largest change management programme since Victorian times.

Morrell said: “It will require radical change to the way we do business as well as government action to meet the scale of the challenge.  There are no easy answers.”

“I hope this report will mark the start of a detailed collaboration between industry and government to address this complex issue.”

The report said the construction industry had engaged positively with the sustainability issue with new cutting-edge practices being implemented across the country.

But the Climate Change Act calls for the net UK carbon account in 2050 to at least 80% lower than the 1990 baseline, which will require a ‘quantum change’ in the industry’s response to this challenge.

    • meeting the UK’s commitment to reducing carbon will affect every aspect of the built environment, with a focus needed now on the existing built stock
    • it could provide construction SMEs with a 40 year programme of work and act as a springboard to growth for more than 200,000 small businesses in the sector
    • Creating a low carbon construction industry would develop skills and expertise that would be of great value to other sectors
    • Government and industry need to work closely together to identify the best ways to stimulate the demand for low carbon and energy efficiency measures.
  • Morrell’s four key findings

Construction Minister Mark Prisk said: “We will carefully consider this important document and the government will respond to these detailed recommendations next year.

“Success in moving to a low carbon construction industry would provide UK firms with the chance to grow overseas as other countries seek our expertise and skills in this area.”

Construction Products Association chief executive Michael Ankers said: “This report provides an enormous opportunity and there is a 40 year programme of work out there for those capable of seizing the opportunities this presents.

“The report sets out a very exciting agenda for the construction industry, but it makes clear that without decisive leadership and co-operation between different parts of the industry, and between industry and government, we will not achieve the benefits for the construction industry and the wider UK economy.

He added: “The biggest challenge undoubtedly lies in making our existing buildings more energy efficient.

“Whilst energy efficiency products and solutions have been available for some time, there is still a need for the consumer to understand and grasp the opportunities to considerably improve the carbon performance of their homes.

“We particularly welcome the recommendation that an existing homes hub is established similar to the Zero Carbon Hub that is working so successfully to develop the programme for delivering all new homes to a zero carbon standard by 2016.

Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) President, Peter Hansford warned that the regulatory conditions first needed to be in place to succeed in the move to a low-carbon economy.

“Aspects of the current framework lack long term vision and do little to encourage behavioural change. Close collaboration between industry and Government will be fundamental in overcoming regulatory barriers.

“Government must also take a lead role in making sure these goals become reality. The long awaited National Infrastructure Plan and today’s IGT report are extremely welcome, but they are just a start.”

Brian Berry, Director of External Affairs at the FMB said: “The recommendation to apply additional fiscal incentives to deliver the Green Deal is an essential one because without such incentives this flagship policy has little hope of success.

“Cutting the rate of VAT on energy efficient repairs would be the most obvious and simplest choice to kickstart the retrofit market.”

Latest news

McLaren gets green light for 45-storey Leeds tower

Landmark Wellington Square scheme will see 464 flats built with 360,000 sq ft of offices
2 days ago

Heavy rain causes 1.9% construction output fall

Hopes remain undampened of a resi-led recovery this summer
2 days ago

Taziker restruture to return to profitability after £1.2m loss

Founders bought the business back from private equity after last year's loss
2 days ago

£220m London wharf homes scheme approved

285 homes to be built beside protected Albert and Swedish Wharves in Wandsworth
2 days ago

Major project veteran named civils director for Sizewell C

David Speight previously worked on Hinkley, Heathrow and HS2 client teams
2 days ago

Morgan Sindall lands £19m Milton Keynes hospital job

Crane lifts to be carefully co-ordinated to ensure air ambulance remains active
3 days ago

Clancy bolsters civils leadership team

Daniel Tonkin and Simon Hyams join as operation directors of water and infrastructure
3 days ago

Balfour names new project boss for HS2’s super-hub station

Steve O’Sullivan replaces Nigel Russell who was promoted to CEO of Balfour's HS2 ops
3 days ago

Buckingham Group supply chain hit doubles to £256m

Total owed to unsecured creditors soars as surety providers finalise claims
3 days ago

Builders demand an end to police plant bans

Call to suspend all embargoes on moving mobile cranes and large site kit
3 days ago

Green light for £65m Blackpool multiversity campus

Education campus of 350,000 sq ft will be delivered in phases
3 days ago

Vinci signs £138m Sheffield steel forge expansion deal

Sheffield Forgemasters signs landmark contract after two years of pre-construction works
4 days ago

McAlpine hires HS2 programme boss to head defence arm

Armed forces logistics expert Mike Hickson takes role as MD of defence
4 days ago

£200m carbon capture plan for Deeside site

Energy from waste operator enfinium looking to invest in North Wales plant
3 days ago

McAleer & Rushe promotes five staff to contracts directors

Design and build contractor targets £500m revenue next year
4 days ago

Consultant quartet win Government estate upgrade deal

Government Property Agency selects Arcadis, Tetra Tech, AtkinsRéalis and McBains
4 days ago

Resi towers pioneer to transform Liverpool site

Beetham founder Hugh Frost to help develop 1,200 new homes
5 days ago

Construction Manager of the Year crowned

Galliford Try's Barry Kingscote wins coveted prize: Full list of winners
5 days ago

Landsec £250m London terraced office job approved

Skanska tipped for 20-storey Hill House scheme near Fleet Street
5 days ago

Lendlease tops March contracts league

BAM and ISG rank third with big contract wins
4 days ago

Vistry strikes deal with Homes England for 1,000 units

Firm's timber frames factory will supply most of the Midlands houses
4 days ago

Morgan Sindall go-ahead to build 23-storey Salford resi job

Funding deal with CBRE allows latest project on bank of River Irwell to proceed
5 days ago

Unite Students gains planning for London and Bristol schemes

RG Group will build landmark Stratford tower and Freestone Island projects
5 days ago

Rolls-Royce gets go-ahead for 1.1m sq ft expansion in Derby

Major expansion of Raynesway campus planned to met submarine fleet orders
5 days ago

GMI Construction edges back into profit

A year of controlled consolidation helped generate £0.9m profit but cash at bank dropped to £10m
5 days ago

Balfour gets final sign-off for HMP Highland at £209m

Deal struck for delayed Inverness prison after costs rocket
6 days ago

Renew buys bridge maintenance business

Contractor boosts highways division with £5m acquisition
5 days ago

HS2 tests market for £150m mass transit job

2.4km long elevated Automated People Mover to go out to tender in 2026
5 days ago

Cardo completes fourth acquisition in a year

Expanding Welsh building maintenance specialist reaches £170m turnover
6 days ago

Watchdog clears Heidelberg takeover of Mick George

Four quarries and five ready-mix operations to be sold to meet competition concerns
6 days ago

Contractor services