Climate positive

Climate change is receiving more attention than ever before, as people become more concerned about the need to cut carbon emissions. That is why BAM has a long term ambition is to have a positive impact on the climate, both by reducing our own carbon emissions and helping others to reduce theirs too. It is part of our Net positive strategy, and means we will:

  • Reduce the energy we use by digitalising our business and by improving the efficiency of our operations
  • Use as much power, fuel and heat from renewable or non-polluting sources as possible
  • Work with our clients and supply chain to reduce their emissions
  • Bring low or zero carbon products and services to market to scale-up our positive impact

Our performance

In 2018 our emissions were 11,546 tCO2e and our normalised emissions were 12.2 tCO2e/£1m turnover. This represents a reduction of 27% against our 2015 baseline and 55% compared with 2008 levels, removing 18,000 tCO2e from our business. We are on track to achieve our 2020 target (a 25% reduction compared with 2015) and have set a new science based target to reduce emissions by 50% based on 2015 levels.

Following our work with the Carbon Trust to assess our 'scope three' emissions, we've also committed to reduce emissions from our supply chain and of the buildings we deliver for our clients.

You can find a breakdown of our carbon footprint in the final section on this page.

BAM's CO2 reduction journey

Low carbon construction

Construction projects are the largest source of BAM's direct emissions, so we set CO2 reduction targets for every project, focusing on using less energy and fuel. This has resulted in our projects becoming more efficient and we're using 46% less energy per £1 million turnover than in 2010 (and our average kWh/£1m continues to decrease). 

This is a result of using energy monitoring and management tools, and using more efficient equipment, lighting and accommodation. Our central energy management team continues to work with sites to help plan, manage and reduce energy and fuel use and to test new technologies which offer greater efficiencies.

We're using 7,700 kWh per £1m turnover,
46%, less energy than in 2010

Low carbon transport

Transport is vital to our business but travel leads to emissions, and unnecessary travel leads to higher costs and affects employee wellbeing. Since 2008 we've worked hard to reduce these impacts. Our staff now spend less time on the road, which is good for the environment and their wellbeing. In 2018 both total business miles and average business miles per employee reduced by 4% and 3% respectively. 

The average efficiency of our company car fleet is now 101gCO2/km, although this will rise in the short term due to real-world emissions tests. We continue to aim for reductions by introducing more electric vehicles into our fleet and avoiding travel altogether, for example through our roll-out of Skype for Business.

Average efficiency of our company car fleet

Reducing wider impacts

Our targets have been largely based on the carbon emissions BAM creates directly, but we know that we also need to work with our supply chain and clients to take account of the wider impacts that buildings have, and reduce their emissions too.

For example, to deliver low carbon buildings, we are increasingly looking beyond design targets, towards the actual performance of buildings in use (e.g. achieving Display Energy Certificate ratings). We work with our clients to carry out post occupancy evaluations (through a soft landings approach), to ensure their buildings perform as well as possible. BAM Energy also finance, install and manage renewable energy installations and carry out energy efficicncy improvements for clients (on both new and existing buildings).

Within the industry, we continue to try and encourage the take-up of net zero carbon buildings (find out more here), and are also working with suppliers (such as Hanson) to reduce embodied carbon impacts.

2018 Carbon footprint

Our 2018 emissions were 11,546 tCO2e, this is a decrease of 13% compared with 2017. Despite a reduced turnover, significant reductions in both electricity and fuel use mean we have reduced our normalised carbon emissions (tonnes per £1m turnover). We track emissions by key activity. This includes premises (fixed offices and depots), construction sites (electricity, gas and fuel), transport (cars, commercial vehicles and air travel) and waste sent to landfill, as required for our CEMARS certification. 

Emissions by key activity area

The chart shows BAM's emissions from each individual source. We measure emissions from all our operations and report the most significant sources. Our emissions are calculated in line with the greenhouse gas protocol and with the international CEMARS standard and ISO14064.


Emissions by individual source

While we ultimately want to reduce our absolute or total carbon footprint, it’s important to measure and also reduce our normalised emissions (or our ‘emissions intensity’). We measure this against our annual turnover to take account of any decreases or increases in emissions related to our business growing or shrinking (we exclude property sales related turnover as this is not related to our emissions). In an ideal world, we want to achieve growth while decreasing our emissions. The continued downward trend of our normalised emissions shows we are performing well.

Emissions normalised against turnover

BAM reports emissions in ‘Scopes’ to comply with the Green House Gas Protocol and ISO 14064. Scopes are a way of defining emissions as direct or indirect. 

Scope 1 includes all purchased fuel (e.g. gas oil, natural gas and diesel purchased and then used by BAM).

Scope 2 includes all electricity which has been purchased by BAM.

Scope 3 includes all other indirect emissions. We currently include our grey fleet, air travel and waste sent to landfill. We have now assessed our wider scope 3 emissions and will begin reporting these separately and targeting reductions. 

Emissions by scope