Environmental Impact

We recognise our impact on the environment and have set challenging targets to address this.

Achieving economic growth and creating long-term value for society within environmental limits is a collective challenge.

One of the most significant contributions we make to society is through the delivery of our homes. For more details on how we're working to provide high-quality homes and developments that support well-being and a low-carbon lifestyle, please read Delivering to Customers & Communities.

Making Waste History

In 2014, we launched our Make Waste History campaign – a long-term strategic programme to improve resource efficiency. Using natural resources, like the materials we use to build our homes, energy, water, and office supplies, efficiently is a win-win.  Not only does it help us to keep our operating costs down, it means that we reduce our environmental impact.  

Initially, our focus for the Make Waste History campaign is waste on our sites and office energy and water. But gradually will include initiatives to increase employees’ awareness of their own consumption and to motivate change, innovation, and sharing of best practice.   

Energy & Water Efficiency

In 2014, we set a target to reduce office energy and water consumption per person by 10% by the end of our financial year 2017. Since then, we have undertaken numerous initiatives to help achieve our target. This has included conducting a full energy efficiency review at our three oldest offices, which resulted in new LED spotlighting. We also improved water controls in our Head Office washrooms. These first few initiatives have already resulted in a 16.2% reduction in energy use and a 22.5% reduction in water use per person in our Financial Year 2015.  

We also conducted energy efficiency reviews of six sites (representative of all our operating sites) in spring 2015. Each division has reviewed their results and created an action plan to address their own unique opportunities to reduce energy. We also put in place a number of the recommendations across all our sites. For example, we’ve put in place a procedure to reduce the duration our site compounds rely on diesel generators and implemented an LED lighting policy for all our showhomes. More recommendations are being reviewed and tested now with the intention of rolling out more over the next year.  

Waste on our Sites

For many years, the construction industry has focused on reducing waste sent to landfill through initiatives such as increasing recycling rates and energy generation from waste. Crest Nicholson has set two targets to drive performance in this area. 

Diverting at least 90% of construction waste from landfill - something we have achieved for the past four years. 

Diverting at least 75% of demolition and excavation waste from landfill - something we have achieved for the past three years.

However, only working to divert waste from landfill does not address the significant opportunity to reduce the amount of waste produced in the first place. Upon achieving our two diversion from landfill targets we turned our attention to driving waste out through the supply chain and upstream through the design process. In 2014, we set a target of reducing our volume of waste produced per 1,000 ft2 delivered by 10% by the end of 2015.

In the year, we achieved a 3% reduction in our volume of waste/1000 ft2. Although falling short of our target, we remain optimistic. The Make Waste History campaign is still in its infancy and it will take time to see the impact in our performance. Also, when we consider the growth we had in the year, increasing our delivery of homes by 8%, we can be proud that we still managed to reduce our volume of waste.

To find out more about how we’re working to Make Waste History on our sites, please read the case study below.
Make waste history

Making Waste History on our Sites

Read about how we are working to Make Waste History.

Download PDF
In briefCreating efficiency at site compounds
Kilnwood Vale retouch p49

With more than 58% of our company’s entire carbon footprint in 2015 coming from energy use on sites, it is crucial to find innovative ways to improve our energy efficiency during construction.

For over a year now Crest Nicholson have been monitoring the amount of electricity generated from a photovoltaic solar system installed on top of a site cabin at Rosewood, our development in Colchester, Essex. Initial findings have shown that more than 750kWh of electricity has been generated in that 12 month period. This is equivalent to 1.5% of a standard site compound’s annual electricity use. We will continue to monitor the solar panel system for another 12 months before deciding whether to roll this out more widely across our sites.

On another site at Spencers Wood, near Shinfield in Berkshire, Crest Nicholson are trialing site cabins that have been fitted with energy-efficiency measures, including passive infrared sensor lighting and timed electric heaters. Over the next 12 months, we will be monitoring the site cabins’ energy consumption to compare any potential financial and energy savings against our initial capital investment. If the results prove successful, these measures will be reviewed by the Make Waste History regional forums for wider roll-out across our sites.

Centenary Quay is on its way to making waste history
Using the suns rays at Rosewood Environmental impact integrated

At Centenary Quay, our large-scale regeneration development in Southampton, there is momentum to reduce waste. 

From different coloured skips dotted around the site to creative re-use of off-cuts and regular discussion of waste reduction at weekly team meetings, the site team is working with its contractors to tackle the issue of waste. A Material Controller ensures that storage areas are tidy and easy to access, sensible stock levels are maintained, contractors re-use materials and off-cuts wherever possible, and skips are packed efficiently to reduce the number of collections by the waste company. 

And, it’s not just construction waste being targeted. Water butts have been installed throughout the site compound to gather rainwater to clean the footpaths and water plants. Urinal valves have been upgraded and motion sensors fitted on the lights in the site offices. 

The momentum and hard work is starting to pay off. Centenary Quay has seen a 33% reduction in waste produced (per 1000sqft) in the first two quarters of this year when compared to the same timeframe last year. This reduction equates to a cost saving of £511 per 1000sqft. 

“At the end of the day, it’s all about how we manage our materials, how we communicate and educate the trades, and take advantage of opportunities. That will be the key to our success.”  Justin Mulholland, Site Manager at Centenary Quay 

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