Our commitment to take positive action

Our commitment to take positive action

Sustainability

Sustainability

“The climate emergency is the greatest threat to our planet. Structural engineers have a responsibility to help mitigate its effects by changing the way buildings and infrastructure are designed, commissioned and constructed.”

Institution of Structural Engineers

Booth King Partnership is a proud signatory of ‘Engineers Declare’ in response and recognition of the construction industry’s (generally) negative impact on the environment. It is both a public declaration of our planet’s environmental crisis and is a commitment to take positive action in response to climate change and biodiversity collapse.

Booth King Partnership have always strived for innovative, cost-effective and ‘lean’ designs, which have cemented us as class leaders within stages 3 and 4 of the hierarchy of sustainable construction. However, this is not enough to solve the climate emergency.

Hierarchy of Sustainable Construction

To make real changes within the industry we must strive to reduce the amount we build (levels 1 and 2 of the hierarchy). Whilst this seems counterintuitive to say as built environment designers, there are clear routes in front of us. We must challenge the brief, and when refurbishment is an option, demonstrate our knowledge and ability in this field.

As part of our commitment, Booth King Partnership assess the carbon impact of the structural design by calculating the embodied carbon contained within the structural elements.

Embodied carbon is effectively the weight of carbon molecules emitted by industrial processes in the production and transport of raw building materials.

We track the embodied carbon of a building structure at all stages of design development as standard for BIM projects. CO2e comparison and continued learning is exercised between design stages.

The most prevalent means of an Engineer reducing the carbon footprint of a project is to reduce the embodied carbon contained within the structural building materials.

However, significant improvements can be made by having holistic discussions with the wider design team and client, developing multi-beneficial design elements that may reduce operating carbon consumption over the lifetime of a building.

This approach requires a concerted and collective effort from all members of the professional team and Client during detailed design development, and from Contractors and Sub-Contractors during execution.

Some words from our Managing Director, Barry Jefcoate

I am proud to be a Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers, which in its founding charter contains this definition of Civil Engineering, which can be applied to all engineering: “the art of directing the great sources of power in Nature for the use and convenience of man.”

Given the challenges to our industry now, this could be re-interpreted as “the art of directing the scarce resources of Nature for the use and convenience of humankind.”

We are committed to minimising the embodied carbon of our designs, which is why we include this criterion in our scheme design appraisals. We have also a strong background in refurbishing and re-purposing existing buildings.

Barry Jefcoate
Managing Director, Booth King Partnership
Email: barry.j@booth-king.co.uk

Booth King Partnership are striving to do better. As experts in the construction industry we must help to guide and inform others. This is a continual improvement process, with new guidance and innovations being available all the time.