Major construction and consultancy firm Mace has announced that it is now a net-zero business, after investing in measures to reduce emissions and setting up an offsetting scheme.
The business announced in January 2020 that it intended to become a net-zero business within a year – a commitment covering emissions relating to operations and developments. Mace develops residential, commercial and retail spaces in the UK and overseas with its best-known development being The Shard.
In a statement this week, Mace confirmed that its emissions from these sources were 50% lower in 2020 than they were in 2019. The year saw the business procure 75% more renewable energy and banning diesel generators onsite, significantly driving down Scope 2 (power-related) emissions.
Reductions in development-related emissions were also realised by reduced business travel and an increase in the use of low-carbon materials, like cement alternatives and steel. Mace is notably a member of The Climate Group’s recently-launched SteelZero initiative, which is uniting businesses across the built environment to drive global market demand for net-zero steel.
These reductions brought Mace to the point that it was able to offset its remaining emissions. It is working with sustainability consultancy Carbon Footprint Ltd to invest in six Gold Standard and Verified Carbon Standard projects that are bringing new renewable generation capacity online, improving energy efficiency, preventing deforestation and driving reforestation. Investments cover carbon abatement equivalent to the remainder of Mace’s emissions, including emissions generated by employees working from home during Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.
Next month, Mace will publish a roadmap detailing how it intends to deliver further decarbonisation of its operations and developments and how it will apply learnings to tackle other sources of Scope 3 (indirect) emissions. The roadmap will span through to 2026 and be headlined by a commitment to reduce the firm’s absolute carbon footprint by 10% each year. Crucially, the roadmap will sit within the core business strategy rather than within a separate sustainability strategy.
“I’m delighted that we have realised our ambition in the same year that we set our target. “My hope is that our net-zero carbon position will inspire the industry to take greater action as a whole,” Mace’s group chief executive Mark Reynolds said. “Only by working together, sharing our learning and supporting each other’s efforts will we make the difference that’s needed.”
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