National Campaign Launched to Combat Construction Air Pollution

In response to a survey of Considerate Constructors Scheme (CCS) members on air pollution, the Scheme’s ‘Spotlight on…air pollution’ provides vital resources to enable the whole industry to tackle the far-reaching effects of poor air quality.

While 84% of survey respondents acknowledge there is an issue with air pollution in the construction industry, nearly two thirds (64%) feel the industry is not doing enough to tackle it.

The survey, which had over UK and Irish 600 construction respondents revealed:

  • 91% said air pollution is a nationwide issue.
  • 88% said the importance of minimising air pollution is being communicated to the workforce on their site.
  • 62% said their site has appropriate measures in place to address air pollution.
  • 56% have a good or detailed understanding of air pollution.
  • 39% have an average understanding of the regulations surrounding air pollution.
  • The national ‘Spotlight on…air pollution’ campaign has been launched by CCS to help raise awareness of how the construction industry can address air pollution from construction sites.

Air pollution has devastating effects on the health – including respiratory illness, asthma, bronchitis and even cancer – as well as a huge economic impact, with an estimated cost to the economy of more than £20 billion every year.

While some of the survey results were encouraging, there are clearly areas for improvement and the need for the industry to work together to help reduce air pollution.

Hosted on the Scheme’s Best Practice Hub ‘Spotlight on…air pollution’ provides practical steps, case studies, resources and regulatory information to help the industry address construction air pollution.

The Scheme, which makes around 18,000 monitoring visits to construction sites, companies and suppliers every year, is in a prime position to help promote action.

Practical case studies on how to address the issue include contributions from: Canary Wharf Contractors Ltd; Costain; the Institution of Civil Engineers; Interserve; Mace; Sir Robert McAlpine and TfL (Transport for London).

CCS Chief Executive, Edward Hardy said: “A staggering 40,000 deaths a year are linked to air pollution in the UK, and many people are suffering long-term health problems caused by poor air quality. As construction is a significant contributor to air pollution, it is essential for the industry to put measures in place to clean up our air by working together to reduce our impact on air quality.

“The Scheme’s ‘Spotlight on…air pollution’ campaign provides everyone within the industry access to a practical suite of resources including best practice, guidance and case studies from Scheme-registered construction sites, companies and suppliers on how to tackle this issue, as well as guidance from various organisations.”

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