New global standard in sustainable procurement has been hit by Balfour Beatty


Construction contractor Balfour Beatty has become the first contractor in the world to hit a new standard set out for sustainable procurement

Contractor Balfour Beatty is celebrating achieving a new global standard in sustainable procurement. The firm is the first in the world to do so.

The ISO20400 standard was drawn up by a committee of representatives from more than 40 nations. It has been in development since 2013 and proves a firm has considered environmental as well as personal sustainability when creating procurement policy.

The standard is based on UN principles for human rights, business, and environmental sustainability.

Achieving the standard

In order to gain the standard Balfour Beatty was assessed over a period of several days in a series of interviews. The firm used a number of projects to showcase its efforts in sustainability, including the £87m Haymarket Building, which was constructed as part of the St James’ Market development—a £320m project for the Crown Estates.

Balfour Beatty’s head of sustainable procurement Aaron Reid said: “The standard gives us a clear framework to determine ‘what good looks like’ in terms of sustainable procurement and how we compare against it.

“The assessment itself was robust, practical and coherent. It held a mirror up to us as a business, enabling us to uncover areas of existing good practice to be shared and areas for improvement to focus upon.”

Chair of the Supply Chain School and director of Action Sustainability, who acted as third party evaluators, Shaun McCarthy added: “Societal expectations for supply chains to minimise impact on the environment and respect human rights are at a tipping point.

“In response, ISO20400 sets out a strategic framework for achieving sustainability and value for organisations competing in a global market.

“Procurement professionals and their stakeholders need to step up to this sustainability challenge and the standard provides a global framework for doing so.”

The HS2 Survey


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