McGill is partnering with Built Environment Networking at the Scotland Development Conference, because sustainability is at the heart of how McGill operates, says McGill Bid Manager, Colin Brown.

One of the things we say at McGill, is that how we work is as important as the work that we do. That can mean a lot of different things; for example, we’re committed Living Wage employers, and run a thriving apprenticeship programme that’s developing the industry’s future leaders; we regularly work in the homes of vulnerable tenants, and our employees are trained to carry out their work in a way that’s respectful of each residents’ particular needs.

Building services is critical for decarbonisation

We’ve now rolled out our Sustainability Policy, as we are looking closely at the role that the building services industry in general, and McGill in particular, will play as the Scottish Government zero greenhouse gas emissions targets come into effect in 2045. To many, that date might sound far away, but the reality is that the construction industry needs to be researching, developing, and embedding cutting-edge sustainability technologies into how it works now, if the country is to stand a chance of reducing its carbon footprint enough to make the target achievable.

Decarbonisation is a responsibility and an opportunity

Decarbonisation of the built environment is a massive responsibility for companies in our industry, but it’s also a huge opportunity – there are around 29 million homes across the UK which need to be retrofitted to become more thermally efficient, and that’s before we consider commercial and public sector buildings. At the moment, we’re seeing something of a viability race, as competing technologies are mooted, developed, and tested to see if they can be scaled up to be mass produced affordably enough to be adopted by the industry, which after all needs to be able to profit from the work of decarbonisation.

There’s a lot to think about, and if anyone tells you they have all the answers, let’s just say they’re being wildly optimistic. Our Sustainability Policy isn’t etched in stone, it’s an evolving document in the face of shifting technologies and opportunities – and that’s ok. But one thing stays true, which is that how we work is as important as the work we do. We’ll continue to prioritise sustainability, both in the contracts and projects we undertake, and in how we complete each job, from looking at the sustainability built into our supply chain, to the timber we use, to the amount of waste we produce, to how much we can recycle.

That’s why we’re proud to be partners of the Built Environment Networking event, taking place at the Scotland Development Conference next month. There’s so much to learn from other industry leaders, and we also can’t wait to have face-to-face conversations with you all – its’ been too long! Come and catch us at the BE Networking event on the 21st and 22nd October.