Zero carbon 2050: Act now, government and sector warned

The UK’s construction sector and the government have been warned to act immediately if the country is to hit its 2050 zero-carbon target.

A new report from the National Federation of Builders’ (NFB) Major Contractors Group (MCG) highlights that construction directly influences 47% of the UK’s carbon emissions and 61% of its waste.

The report - Transforming Construction for a Low Carbon Future – warns that the sector “must be transformed within a generation” to meet the government’s targets.

And it also outlines the opportunities that exist across the sector, including domestic, industrial, flood defence, the power sector, and transport.

NFB’s chairman, Nick Sangwin, said: “This report is not a document to sit on shelves gathering dust, it is designed to galvanise the sector into action, to see the opportunities and to lead the way towards zero carbon by 2050.

“It is critical that those within the construction sector are stepping forward and implementing a real step-change in the way they do business.”

Mark Wakeford, chair of the NFB’s Major Contractors Group, added: “There are no excuses: government, contractors, the supply chain, manufacturers, designers, and the trades must all embrace the challenge now, as highlighted in our recommendations.

“But it’s about more than just money: the transformation required in the construction industry is multi-faceted and it is critical that industry and government take a joined-up approach to bring together developments in skills, procurement, design, products and materials, transport, and more.”

The full report can be read here.