New guidance supports low-carbon construction procurement in Wales

31st March 2022

We have produced a new guidance document for WRAP Cymru which outlines best practice for low carbon and resource efficient construction procurement in Wales.

The built environment accounts for around 39% of global carbon emissions, with construction works and materials representing around 11% of global emissions. The new guidance will support the Welsh Government in its ambition to become a zero-waste, net-zero carbon nation by 2050 by supporting public and private sector clients and contractors to reduce the carbon impact of their procurement.

Reducing the carbon impacts of construction processes and the built environment will be a critical element in attempts to reduce Wales’ overall carbon impact.

Our guidance aims to allow users to consider the whole life carbon impacts of the purchase, design and construction of built assets and encourage the selection of materials with lower embodied carbon, while enhancing the application of circular economy outcomes through high quality reuse, recycling and landfill avoidance.

The use and management of materials in a sustainable way is of particular importance – construction materials represent half of all raw materials used in Europe, with construction and demolition waste making up around a third of all waste generated.

Underpinning these elements will be the ability for guidance users to clearly define relevant procurement requirements and set out expectations and ensure their organisation is supporting the transition towards a circular economy.

Dan Whittaker, Senior Consultant at Eunomia, said: “For Wales to achieve its ambition of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, lowering embodied carbon over the built environment’s lifetime and enhancing the application of more circular outcomes needs to occur. This guidance should help public and private sector construction clients and contractors in preparing and applying embodied carbon and circular procurement requirements to their projects.”

You can access the guidance document on the WRAP Cymru website.

Featured Image: Robin Drayton via Geograph