Resource efficiency

BAM has a long term ambition to become Net Positive. In order to achieve this we are planning our journey towards zero construction waste. This includes digital construction, engaging our supply chain to take steps towards creating a circular economy, and pushing boundaries with prefabrication.

Towards zero construction waste

Continual waste reduction

We work hard to reduce the production of waste at source. That is why we engage the whole supply chain, from designers through to subcontractors and materials suppliers, to understand how better design, improved packaging and the more efficient control of materials on site can contribute to waste reduction. We continue to hold design for resource efficiency workshops in order to work with clients and design teams at the earliest stage possible on projects, as a project's design can have a large influence on the waste produced on site.

We work to understand how design influences on-site waste

Although there is a priority to prevent waste in the first place, we continue to track the quantity of waste removed from sites with a target for reuse, recycling or as a last resort, recovery and landfill. This is normally by using specialist waste transfer stations that achieve the highest possible value from the waste materials taken from our sites. There are also a growing number of suppliers offering takeback schemes for their materials. They use the take backs as feedstock for the production of new product.


To align with new targets across the Royal BAM Group, BAM Construct UK is beginning to record the tonnes of waste removed from our sites (we previously reported in m3), making use of more primary data from our waste management contractors. We have also set a new target against a new 2015 baseline. In 2015 the three year rolling average has been calculated as 40 tonnes/£1million turnover. The three year rolling average for 2017 was 34.4 tonnes/£1million turnover, a 14% reduction. This is a good start to the 25% reduction that has been targeted by 2020. We continue to pursue construction techniques and products that will help us achive our vision of zero non-hazardous waste to landfill. The proportion of waste diverted away from landfill currently stands at 92%.

Our reduction of construction waste
production since 2015 (normalised t/£1m)

Towards resource positive

Our focus has previously been on reduction, however our aim is not to just do things better, but to do new things. That is why we continue to use our position as an industry leader to share our experiences and drive the performance of the construction industry by working with the UK Building Council, Supply Chain Sustainability School and Build UK. And we are working with clients, suppliers and peers to facilitate the step change we need to do things differently, for instance we are one of 16 partners working on the 'Buildings as Material Banks' EU Horizon 2020 project, which hopes to catalyse a move to circular buildings.

We also recognise the whole lifecycle impact of buildings is where we need to focus in the future. In 2017 we have been learning how our Dutch colleagues have worked with their clients to deliver circular economy buildings, such as Circl for ABN AMRO. In the UK we continue to develop buildings using circular principles. This means finding ways to extend a building's life by designing in flexibility, or repurpusing it. For example, we created Elliot Hudson College in a building that was formerly a call centre. During 2017 we also worked with our supply chain through a series of four workshops to upskill and engage on circular economy opportunities within their businesses.

Elliot Hudson College was previously a call centre

Case studies relating to this topic

Imperial Tobacco Global HQ

Imperial Tobacco Global HQ

A design and build project to deliver Imperial Tobacco’s new, BREEAM Excellent, global headquarters in Bristol city centre. The client’s aspiration was to create a sustainable, state of the art global headquarters. The new four storey office building accommodates 500 staff and includes an auditorium, gym and restaurant all incorporated around a feature ‘floating’ staircase.

Nottingham Orchard Hotel

Nottingham Orchard Hotel

The new £20 million Orchard Hotel incorporates a business lounge, restaurant, bar area, outside terrace, gym and four meeting rooms. Other features include floor-to-ceiling windows, bespoke furniture and unique decor throughout.

BAM FM: Bromsgrove PFI

BAM FM: Bromsgrove PFI

BAM FM delivers total FM services, including waste management to five schools in Worcestershire County as part of the Bromsgrove PFI contract. The new schools provide a modern teaching environment and also offer shared community facilities such as a library. Working with Bromsgrove PFI, BAM FM came up with a new solution to waste management, achieving 100% diversion from landfill. 

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