Lendlease has announced all of its Australian construction sites have achieved carbon neutral status, with work underway to completely remove emissions from its building sites in the future.
It managed to achieve carbon neutrality across its sites by adopting environmentally friendly building practices and offsetting the remaining 2019 financial year construction emissions, reported under the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting act.
Employees were asked to vote on the offset projects used to achieve the milestone, with a portfolio of certified carbon reduction projects supporting the Great Barrier Reef winning overwhelming support, alongside renewable energy and cooking stove projects in Asia.
Lendlease has also made commitments to reduce emissions from the manufacturing of building materials and is working with the supply chain to advance low-carbon material uptake and innovation.
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Achieving carbon neutral status is part four of the company’s decarbonisation strategy, which has seen Lendlease refreshing site sustainability standards to focus on reducing emissions.
The next step for the company is to partner with clients, suppliers and industry groups to lead the uptake of low-carbon materials and to support supplier innovation in low carbon manufacturing techniques.
“Lendlease has a long-held the view that truly great places should deliver positive environmental and social outcomes, alongside financial value,” said Lendlease Building CEO Dale Connor.
“In response to the pressure climate change has on our planet and people, our Australian Building business has very recently become one of Australia’s first carbon neutral constructors. This is something I’m incredibly proud of.”
Lendlease’s Head of Sustainability, Building, Ann Austin said there is sometimes concern that offsetting is “the easy way out” and that efforts should be spent on trying to eliminate emissions rather than offset them.
“However, it’s important to acknowledge third party certified offsets are an important interim step in addressing climate change,” Austin said.
“Offsets provide a way to take immediate action to slow climate change, while solutions to completely remove emissions directly from our construction activities are progressed. Well-selected offsets make a real and measured impact on reducing climate change that would otherwise not occur.”