Pages in My sustainable business
5. Workspaces and construction
Did you know the built environment contributes around 40% of the UK's total carbon footprint? (Source: UKGBC)
If you’re considering a construction project, whether it’s a whole new building, an addition to an existing one or a major renovation, there are lots of opportunities to incorporate sustainability measures.
LoCASE – Grant Programme for Energy Efficiency Measures and Business Development
Funding of up to £10,000, (40% of the eligible project costs) for:
- Small, Medium Enterprise's (SME) wanting to install some energy efficiency measures.
- Businesses offering LCREE/EGSS (Low Carbon and Renewable Energy Economy/Environmental Goods and Services Sectors).
Low Carbon Across the South and East (LoCASE) is run locally via Surrey County Council but do let us at RBBC know if you successfully receive funding.
It's important to choose your building materials carefully, from the conventional to the unconventional - it's worth considering:
- FSC or PEFC certified timber
- Recycled materials such as reclaimed bricks or tiles
- Renewable materials such as engineered timber rather than steel
- Low-toxicity paint, varnish and other finishes
- Recycled furniture and furnishings
- Increasing water efficiency standards including low-flow fixtures, cistern displacers and rainwater recycling
- Taking a whole-life cycle approach to building, considering carbon emissions from source to end-of-life
This Net Zero Carbon Toolkit provides lots of useful information on considerations for the early design stages.
Insulation can help save on heating bills (and even air-conditioning bills) and installation during the construction phase is more cost-effective and efficient than retrofitting. While many insulation materials are manufactured from non-renewable resources, there are sustainable alternatives.
Don't forget to check the energy section for advice on how to save on your bills by reducing energy consumption.
A new build is a great opportunity to install renewable energy options, from solar panels to ground or air source heat pumps. Energy UK has some good advice for businesses.
As well as saving money on bills, renewable energy can also generate income through the Government's Feed-in Tariff scheme.
You can incorporate sustainability in the green spaces of your workplace, if you have them. See the section on Green spaces here in the My Home page for more detail.