Issue date: 10 March 2004

ISSUE DATE: 10/03/04

The University of the West of England is to host a high profile conference to look at issues of sustainability in the construction industry. Forty delegates from across the industry will attend the event on 11 March which is part of a Government funded project to find ways to bring the benefits of sustainability into this industry.

The event is being organised by a team from the Faculty of the Built Environment at UWE. Senior Lecturer Danny Myers says sustainability in the construction industry is a critical issue, “The construction industry makes a huge contribution to the quality of our lives. The broad range of activities captured by construction as well as building materials and the associated professional services account for more than 10% of economic activity in the UK and provide employment for around 1.5 million people. Consequently the benefits which would flow from a more efficient and sustainable industry are potentially immense.

“However the industry has not been quick to adapt and its conservative nature means it is perceived as a dirty, dangerous and old fashioned industry. For example, it generates waste on a scale that dwarfs most other industrial sectors.”

In the light of these issues the government launched a strategy in April 2000, Building a better quality of life: a strategy for more sustainable construction, the first government strategy aimed at greening a single industry sector.

As part of this strategy UWE has won government funding for a project promoting sustainable construction in everyday practice. The project - Training the Sustainable Construction Team (TSCT) - has resulted in the development of a CD-Rom and training workshop. This package introduces people to the sustainable construction agenda, and provides information about tried and tested ways of achieving sustainability in the construction process. As part of the TSCT project, the conference will:

• Review the state of play in the construction industry;
• Demonstrate solutions that achieve triple bottom-line benefits;
• Show how sustainable construction can save time, money and resources;
• Discuss the ways in which barriers to sustainable construction can be overcome; and
• Launch the TSCT CD-Rom.

The conference is clearly meeting a need within the industry and has proved so popular that all the spaces for delegates have now been taken.


Editor’s notes

1. Training the sustainable construction team is a DTi funded project

2. For a programme, invitation and sample CD contact: Danny Myers or Caroline Brown (tel 0117 3283031 or 0117 328 3198). Digital images of the event will be available from 15 March 2004 - contact Caroline or Danny.

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