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Engineering services are ‘vital’ to deliver Net Zero

engineering services

Engineering services are key to delivering net zero targets and should be supported by government, Actuate UK has urged.

Engineering services are already driving national energy resilience, strong, sustainable economic growth and the demand for more jobs, according to Actuate UK, the alliance of engineering services, who say UK Net Zero opportunities are burgeoning.

This is the message to Government from Actuate UK, in its response to Chris Skidmore’s recent Net Zero Review.

Actuate UK is looking for a focused and consistent policy approach from Government to achieve legally binding national targets reducing carbon emissions and driving energy efficiency and security. A coordinated effort is also needed to reduce energy demand, by making public, business and residential buildings more energy efficient and changing behaviours.

“The engineering services sector has an essential role in the delivery of ‘fabric first’ with its active carbon reduction measures in both new and existing buildings and infrastructure,” said Paul Reeve, ECA director of CSR & deputy chair of Actuate UK net zero group. “Collaboration between government, clients, the product supply chain, the businesses that install and maintain products and systems, and users and operators will deliver effective, safer and sustainable Net Zero solutions.”

Actuate UK’s response to the Net Zero Review also highlights the need for consumers and businesses to benefit from consistent product and operational standards for Net Zero technology, and for product claims to be made clear and comparable.

Tom Garrigan, technical director for BSRIA and chair of Actuate UK net zero group said: “Delivering comprehensible and applied guidance for businesses and consumers on the application of low carbon technologies gives the sector an opportunity to make a huge contribution to the drive for change. Information means there is no need to miss any opportunity on the path to Net Zero and beyond.”

Our journey towards Net Zero will also require greater engagement with businesses and consumers to reinforce and demonstrate how our behaviour can impact the performance and energy efficiency of a building. The following will also play a key role:

Skilled engineering services personnel to optimise, install and maintain the required technologies. All engineering services occupations have an impact on the Net Zero economy. Every engineering services role is being updated and upskilled, and existing and new technology will need to be optimised and maintained.

Reliable information for businesses on how to reduce their operational carbon emissions and engage with embodied carbon (the carbon emissions required to provide a downstream product or service). Business and Government needs to support the ongoing development of the draft Net Zero Carbon Standard, standardised embodied carbon measuring methods, mandatory product labelling and a national whole-life carbon database.

Engineering services are vital to both UK construction and maintenance. They focus on the whole lifecycle of a building, including consumer wellbeing.

The UK engineering services sector comprises over 60,000 firms and over 350,000 skilled professionals, employees and contractors. It comprises some 40% of UK construction by value, with over £100 billion pounds of additional turnover annually, through the provision of ongoing infrastructure and facilities services.

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