43% of construction contractors and developers consider reducing carbon footprint key aim in improving sustainability says new report
Sustainability is characterized as the ‘responsible use of natural resources’ and ‘reducing carbon footprints’
ReportBuyer.com the leading website for market research reports has added Sustainability in the Global Construction Industry 2012–2013.
A total of 47% of construction contractor and project developer respondents in the global construction industry perceive ‘responsible use of natural resources’ as central to sustainability practices, while 43% consider ‘reducing carbon footprint’ to be the most important sustainability initiative. As many as 41% consider the ‘effective utilization of renewable energy sources’ to be important, while 40% each perceive ‘balancing financial, human, and natural resources for long-term benefits’ and ‘responding to customer for sustainable products and services’ to be the second-most important initiatives.
The ‘responsible use of natural resources’ helps differentiate a company in terms of sustainable practices. Using recycled and alternative products can help to reduce project costs and strategies such as the use of alternative materials and fuels, improving energy efficiency, the responsible use of water, and reducing waste generation can effectively reduce the pressure on the world’s natural resources.
The key drivers of sustainability identified by buyer respondents include ‘client demand’, ‘cost savings and operational efficiency’ and ‘compliance with legislation’, as indicated by 64%, 67% and 65% of respective respondents.
Customer awareness, with regards to eco-friendly products, has significantly increased during the last five years which obligate construction contractors and project developers alike to implement sustainability practices both in their product offerings and business functions. Due to heightened levels of consumer awareness and demand, governments are imposing stringent environmental regulations on construction companies.
Survey result reveals that ‘staff awareness’ and ‘technical expertise’ are the leading organizational pre-requisites for sustainability, as identified by 67% and 66% of respective buyer respondents. Additionally, 59% of respondents consider ‘support from top management’ to be an important pre-requisite.
The employees should be made aware of their contribution to the sustainability agenda. Companies try to adopt various initiatives to emphasize the relevance of sustainability, such as its integration into existing roles and job descriptions, and its assignment as a pre-requisite for employability. It is also included as a part of the appraisal process and induction program.
Survey result reveal that buyer respondents consider an ‘effective health and safety (EHS) management system’, the ‘reduction of energy consumption’ and the ‘effective minimization of waste’ to be important factors with regards to supplier selection.
Workplace injuries, illness or fatalities are a cause of suffering and loss not only for the employees and their families but also for the organization as a whole. A health and safety management system aims to identify, assess and minimize the risks related to health and safety in the workforce. The incorporation of an ‘effective health and safety (EHS) management system’ into all business decisions can reinforce the organizations commitment towards sustainable practices. This motivates buyer companies to engage in business with suppliers who have incorporated an ‘EHS management system’.