Higgins Construction, one of the largest family-owned construction companies in the south east of England, has been awarded The Planet Mark™ for Business Certificate for the fourth year in the row.
The award is in recognition of Higgins Construction achieving a 12.5% reduction in its carbon footprint both as total measure and on per employee basis. The cut was against a target of a 5% reduction in emissions per employee.
Higgins’ total carbon footprint amounted to 557.1 tonnes of CO2 equivalent (tCO2e) in 2016 compared to 636.6 tCO2e in 2015, a decrease of 12.5% year-on-year. Its relative carbon footprint fell to 3.0 tCO2e per employee in 2016 from 3.44 tCO2e in 2015 also representing a 12.5% reduction.
The decrease in total carbon footprint can be attributed mainly to a 17% decrease in indirect emissions from electricity consumption; and a 25% decrease in carbon emissions from the vehicle fleet, helped in particular by the assignment of staff to more local construction sites.
The Planet Mark™ Certificate recognises the company’s good practice in sustainability, including:
- measuring carbon emissions from electricity and paper usage
- cutting its total carbon footprint by 12.5%
- investing in the Eden Project to support education on climate change
- storing 260 tCO2e by protecting one acre of endangered rainforest through the charity Cool Earth
- committing to engage employees and suppliers to drive improvements.
Higgins Construction staff, including (pictured left to right) Environment manager Julie Brooks, director of New Business Development Paul Cooke, and director of Group Services Martin Waller, were formally presented with The Planet Mark™ Certificate of achievement for 2017 earlier this week at the company’s head office in Loughton, Essex.
Presenting the award, founder of The Planet Mark™ Steve Malkin (pictured right), said: “A 12.5% reduction in total carbon emissions is a great achievement in any year, but coming after healthy reductions in its 2014 and 2015 reporting periods, Higgins’ latest achievement is truly outstanding and demonstrates that businesses with the right level of commitment and that stick with it will continue to make progress, year-on-year.”
Higgins Construction achieved an 11% reduction in its total carbon emissions in 2015 and 28% reduction its carbon footprint per employee in 2014.
Receiving the certificate, Paul Cooke commented: “As a business we continue to be extremely committed to reducing our overall carbon emissions and each year have taken every step to ensure this has continued to happen. We are delighted with the results we have achieved and will continue to strive to reduce them further.”
Looking forward, Higgins said it would consider including waste in its carbon footprint in future measuring and reporting, as well as look at increasing the scope of its reporting to include emissions from its construction sites.
The Planet Mark™ was founded in 2013 with the iconic Eden Project in Cornwall, UK, and is awarded to businesses, properties, new developments and projects that are committed to reducing their carbon emissions.
Since it launched, The Planet Mark™ has certified over 100 organisations and helped holders of The Planet Mark™ cut their average carbon emissions per employee by 5% per annum.
Holders of The Planet Mark™ have a minimum requirement to reduce their carbon emissions by 2.5% per year.