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Mother and son travelling on train

Decarbonising the delivery of Europe’s largest infrastructure project

HS2 is a state-of-the art, high-speed line critical for the UK’s low carbon transport future. It will provide much-needed rail capacity across the country and is integral to rail projects in the North and Midlands – helping to level up the UK economy.

  • Service 1

HS2 Limited

  • Service 1

Consultancy, digital technology services, complex programme delivery

  • Service 1

Skanska in a joint venture to deliver the enabling works contract for the southern section of the HS2 route.

Skanska and STRABAG in a joint venture to deliver the Euston tunnels and approaches and Northolt tunnels as part of the main works civils contract for the full detailed design and construction of phase one of the new railway.

Key benefits


carbon reduction already achieved on the main works programme.

The JV became the first main works integrated project team to achieve the PAS2080 global carbon management standard.

Projected 70,000 tCO2e savings during the delivery of the main works through the use of hydrotreated vegetable oil in place of diesel.

2,000 tCO2e saved by removing 35,000 lorry movements from local roads during the enabling works.

With an ambition to be one of the most sustainable high-speed railways in the world, HS2 aims to support the UK in making the transition to a net zero carbon economy.

As the first HS2 main works delivery team to achieve the PAS2080 global carbon management standard in 2018, our team set out to redefine what can be done to reduce the environmental impact of major infrastructure projects and to set a new benchmark for the industry.

The standard recognises organisations which have strategies in place to reduce carbon and develop more collaborative ways of working to promote innovation, delivering benefit to society and communities, and making an important contribution to tackling climate change. Subsequently, HS2 was awarded the standard and it was recently identified in an external review as being one of the best examples of PAS2080 roll-out seen in the industry.

The team is working to achieve ambitious targets for carbon reduction for the main works contract and to drive best practice and innovation among the supply chain.

To meet these targets, the team:

  • conducted holistic carbon modelling of the entire project using an integrated digital system. This identified carbon reduction hotspots that were shared across the project team to drive improvements.
  • has introduced the Carbon Opportunities process, which enables them to identify opportunities to reduce carbon emissions throughout the lifecycle of works. The enabling works team used this process to implement a materials management strategy, at 20 sites across the programme. The strategy maximised the reuse and recycling of demolition materials on site, removing 35,000 lorry movements from local roads and saving 2,000 tCO2e .

By adopting biofuel technology and upskilling the supply chain, the team successfully removed diesel from 75% of enabling works sites and is trialing its removal on main works sites, with an ambition to be diesel free by 2023. Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO) is a key part of that, with projected carbon savings of 70,000 tCO2e during the construction phase, as well as a commitment to using fully renewable energy supply wherever possible and supporting innovative technologies including hydrogen fuel cells.

The team’s design changes on the main works programme have already saved 250,000 tCO2e compared to a baseline calculated on current industry norms, which equates to a 25% reduction.


For more information about this project email Lee Davies.


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Lee Davies, Client director
01628 842 444
[email protected]