In the week where world leaders gathered for the UN Climate Action Summit in New York to discuss new ways for tackling global warming, Willmott Dixon held a special event to mark its own contribution to reducing greenhouse gases and producing sustainable developments
It saw HM The Queen’s representative for Hertfordshire visit the company’s Letchworth Garden City head office to bestow a second Queen’s Award for Enterprise for sustainable development to Willmott Dixon in recognition of how it’s reducing the environmental impact of its own activities and those of its supply chain.
These series of sustainable developments include
- reducing carbon emissions relative to turnover by 59% since 2010
- cutting construction waste intensity by 57% since 2012
- nearly reaching a target to ‘enhance the life-chances of 10,000 young people by 2020’
- 81% of employees took part in community activities
- 100% natural renewable electricity purchased to supply our sites and offices by end 2018
- carbon-neutral for the 6th year running
- increasing by 50% (to nearly £35k) the amount paid in green bonuses to employees choosing low emissions cars
- achieving Level 2 of The Carbon Trust’s Supply Chain Standard – only company in sector to achieve this
- Proud holder of The Carbon Trust Standard
The company has a long track-record for environmentally friendly, low-energy buildings. Following the completion of the Passivhaus certified George Davies Centre for the University of Leicester, it applied this expertise to build Harris Academy in Sutton – the first secondary school in the UK to be built to Passivhaus standards.
Passivhaus buildings are about 10 times more airtight than building regulations require with no more than 0.6 air changes per hour, with the Sutton school achieving 0.30 air changes per hour within a building of over 10,000 square metres.
The company also completed Bristol’s most environmentally friendly office building, with the Aurora building at Finzels Reach one of just a few UK buildings to achieve a BREEAM Outstanding environmental rating.
Willmott Dixon is working with supply chain partners to improve their sustainable performance. As a founding member of the Supply Chain Sustainability School, which provides free training on a range of environmental areas, Willmott Dixon has ensured that 157 Category-A supply chain partners are now members.
This latest recognition by the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise follows a first award in 2014 for sustainable development, and then in 2018 it won an accolade for Promoting Opportunity. To mark the Queen’s Awards hat trick, the Lord-Lieutenant of Hertfordshire presented a scroll to Willmott Dixon chief executive Rick Willmott with a message from HM The Queen.
Group chief executive, Rick Willmott said, “This week’s UN Climate Action Summit was a timely reminder of the urgent action needed to tackle the effects we are seeing of global warming. The last four years were the four hottest on record, and the impacts of climate change are being felt everywhere with real consequences on people’s lives.
“As well as action taken by nation-states to influence how we reverse the rise in carbon emissions to safeguard future generations from the issues that come with climate change, business too need to play a part. That’s why we will continue to invest and lead in new ways to become more sustainable and reduce our environmental footprint over and above our current status of being a carbon-neutral company.”