Tim Mitchell: 19 April 2022
Sustainability should be a key driver of any Environmental Consultancy, and this certainly rings true for Omnia. Our aim is to engrain sustainability into our day to day, from the minimisation of our vehicles on the road attending site through to our technical recommendations on our interpretative reports.
Remediation is a key area where a consultative approach can lead to a sustainable solution, achieving a client’s key targets of timeframe and cost whilst keeping environmental impact to a minimum. Migration to a focus on sustainability is a driver in government procurement, as set out in the recent publication of The Construction Playbook published by the Cabinet Office The Construction Playbook – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk). This publication sets out a framework to allow bids to be considered in relation to a number of aspects, including the extent of how sustainable the bid.
Sustainable Solutions for Brownfield Development
Where brownfield redevelopment is involved, engagement with a competent Environmental Consultant can assist clients in demonstrating the use of sustainable approaches in their bid. This can initially be through limiting the requirement for remediation via site specific risk assessment and then progressing to a focus on sustainable remediation via on site and in situ treatment rather than transfer to landfill, but can be extended more broadly to more practical local issues such a focus on local workforce.
Reusing Soils on Site
The contaminated land industry has increasingly moved to more sustainable approaches including the use of Materials Management Plans under the CL:AIRE DoWCoP. An MMP allows for soils to be reused on site, which has progressed from the prior near automatic solution of transfer of soils to landfill. We see the impact of landfilling in the environment from a legacy perspective in terms of impacted groundwater and ground gas risk, but also now the real time impact of unsustainable approaches which involve significant vehicle movements for the movement of soils in increasingly urban development areas. Opting for a sustainable approach to keep trucks off the roads gives clearly evident benefits such as reduction in fuel bills and the risk to pedestrians, but also provides less immediately quantitative benefits, such as the minimisation of dust release, emissions to local residential properties, alongside significant savings on carbon releases. It is this change that can add clear benefits to tender bids, and can provide an edge other parties.
The Cost of Sustainability?
Sustainability makes sense on a cost basis too, and good planning can allow an all round advantage to development projects. This link up between cost benefit and sustainability credentials for public sector bids alongside increasingly competitive land acquisition for residential developments means that sustainability is on track to be at the forefront of the development industry.
Our team of qualified Geo-Environmental Consultants have a proven track record of adding value to a project, having an especially key focus on assisting pre acquisition bids for land transactions. Please get in touch and a member of our team will be able to assist.
If you’d like Omnia’s help with your project, contact us to speak to one of our team.