Exploring our Carbon Reduction Code Champion Status
Our dedication to supporting the efficient and effective procurement and delivery of public sector projects in the built environment, extends to our commitment to carbon reduction and achieving net zero. We're proud to be the only procurement body with the Carbon Reduction Code CHAMPION status, and we spoke to Chris Clarke, Performance and Improvement Director about what this means for SCAPE.
Why did you sign up to the Code and what benefits did it bring?
The construction sector and its clients need clear signposting and leadership in terms of taking our industry in a more sustainable direction. The code, being linked to the Construction Leadership Council and with academic rigour applied, provides a unifying framework bringing together a number of disparate initiatives into one whole-industry world view of what is required for a lower carbon future. We want to show a clear commitment and leadership for our supply chain, our fellow NACF (National Association Construction Frameworks) framework operators and most importantly for clients needing reassurance they are committing to using the right tools for the job!
What challenges did you face in signing up to the Code? How did you address/overcome them?
The code demands real rigour in terms of organisational commitments to decarbonisation. Crucially, to be a credible champion, we had to develop and demonstrate our own road map as well as a clear strategic vision and activities for driving our supply chain forward through our procurement solutions and clear collaborative approaches to making this real. This process has pushed us to accelerate the independent verification of our carbon reduction plan, get it published and ultimately approved by our board.
What are a few key areas across SCAPE where you are actively pursuing continuous improvement in carbon reduction?
In collaboration with other framework operators within the NACF, we are working towards the development of an embodied carbon performance measurement tool; that connects into the Built Environment Carbon Database in the future. We are also using carbon code sign up as part of our supply chain KPI measurement.
We have pioneered and are applying in practice our Lifecycle contract tool, which is a tailored form of the NEC contract with performance linkages to address the problem of demonstrating energy use (and therefore emissions) of buildings in use. The contract is allowing us to offer a bespoke procurement route for clients of the Scottish public sector seeking to adhere to the Net Zero Public Building Standard in Scotland.
How do you see the Code evolving to enable industry transformation?
As the journey to decarbonise construction materials (embodied carbon) accelerates, I think we will see new standards emerge that we can consistently tie into through the code, in addition to the essential roadmaps already identified in the code, Steel Zero and Concrete Zero. I imagine we can get smarter about direct connections between the various accreditation schemes already in place.
The crucial strength of the code is that it doesn’t duplicate, but rather reinforces and connects with the range of technical standards that are needed in our diverse and complex sector.