Environmental Targets Laid Down

22 June 2011

Costain has set tough targets in its quest to reduce the environmental impact of its business.

“We recognise the environmental impact of our business and we want to do what we can to minimize and reduce that impact. Our goal is to prevent environmental damage and to conserve our natural resources,” said Amy Baldry, Environmental Manager, at Costain.

These goals, while not necessarily new to Costain, are in line with the recently announced Costain Cares initiative which aims to promote a more sustainable business and address the growing needs of its stakeholders, including its shareholders and the communities it serves, through greater corporate responsibility.

“Through the responsible management of materials and waste, we aim to divert as much waste from landfill as possible and ensure where possible we can reuse and recycle in a responsible way,” said Amy.

A number of years ago Costain committed to the WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme) Halving Waste to Landfill initiative. This industry wide responsibility deal aims to reduce the amount of construction, demolition and excavation (CD&E) waste sent to landfill by fifty per cent by 2012. 

WRAP promotes environmental sustainability, particularly with regards to material resource efficiency and use. It aims to encourage and assist industry in diverting waste material away from landfill sites and reduce associated CO2 equivalent emissions.

Costain has set a number of Key Performance Indicators that allows it to monitor its performance and, with regards to waste, it has to date achieved great results.

The amount of waste that has been diverted from landfill has risen from 47% in 2007 to 84% in 2010, while the total amount of waste Costain produces in tones per £100,000 of turnover has dropped from 56.7 tonnes in 2007 to 49.9 tonnes in 2010.

“We now have a greater focus on how we treat our materials through eliminating waste in the first place, reusing and recycling where possible and through smarter procurement, such as promoting the procurement of materials that have a higher recycled content,” said Amy.

Other areas that Costain is focusing on include promoting biodiversity on projects, conserving natural resources like water and reducing the impact of climate change from our operations and that of our clients.

In 2010, Costain developed and launched its climate change strategy and set a long-term target for a 35% reduction in its measured emissions by 2020, compared to a stated baseline in 2008. In 2011, Costain will target a 10% reduction in its measured emissions.

To reduce the impact on climate change, the Company has pledged to monitor, report and reduce carbon emissions and, working with its customers and supply chain partners, will provide low carbon solutions to support its customers climate change targets.

“We all have to take responsibility for what we produce, whether its carbon emissions or plastic drinks containers, and hopefully it will go some way to reducing our impact on the environment,” said Amy.