Eliminating fossil fuel diesel across Lendlease’s UK construction projects with new Alternative Fuels Policy

15 Jul 2021

Lendlease moves quickly into the next phase of its plan to eliminate all fossil fuels from construction sites by implementing a new Alternative Fuels Policy

In 2020, Lendlease began its mission to eliminate fossil fuels from construction sites in a bid to tackle climate change. Backed by bold carbon targets to reach Net Zero Carbon by 2025, and Absolute Zero Carbon by 2040, the company began trialling diesel replacements across a number of its UK construction projects, in partnership with its supply chain.   

Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO) is a sustainable alternative to diesel from fossil fuels. It reduces CO₂ emissions by up to 90%, compared with conventional diesel and can be used as a ‘drop in’ replacement. This means that HVO can be used in existing machinery without the need for engine modifications.

With extensive research and successful pilots of HVO at Lendlease’s Glen Parva prison and Manchester Town Hall project completed, the company is now taking its next bold step to phase out fossil fuel diesel entirely. 

Under a new Alternative Fuels Policy, diesel, petrol, and gas to liquid (GTL), which are often used to power machinery onsite, as well as fuel gases such as liquid petroleum gas (LPG) typically used for heating, will need to be replaced by alternative fuels. Alternatives include Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO), hydrogen fuel cells, renewables and electrified plant when available.

To maximise its sustainability credentials, only HVO derived from used cooking oil will be accepted. To govern this, HVO must come with relevant Proof of Sustainability documentation. This is in keeping with Lendlease’s commitment to source materials responsibly and sustainably. 

This new Alternative Fuels Policy will help Lendlease to eliminate diesel from its construction business, a key milestone in the company’s Roadmap to Absolute Zero Carbon. Lendlease currently uses about 400,000 litres of diesel per year in the UK1. Therefore, removing it entirely has the potential to cut carbon emissions by over 1,000 tonnes – the equivalent of growing 16.500 trees from seedlings over 10 years.

The Alternative Fuels Policy comes into immediate effect for new projects, with existing projects having until the 1st of January 2022 to comply. 

Simon Gorski, Lendlease Europe’s Managing Director of Construction said, “Removing diesel and other liquid fossil fuels on our UK construction projects is a big step in the right direction for us at Lendlease. Our end goal is to eliminate fossil fuels from our operations entirely. Mandating that all projects transition to alternative, low carbon solutions like HVO is going to help us get there. It won’t be a small task, and it’ll take collaboration across the entire value chain to achieve. We are committed to working with our clients, subcontractors, and suppliers and tackle climate change together.”

1Based on Lendlease UK pre-COVID diesel consumption. 

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