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Environment Bill: set binding targets, top industry names urge government


A 23-strong group of leading design, construction and property businesses, including Bennetts Associates, has called on the government to set binding targets in its draft Environment Bill

The companies have signed an open letter to the chancellor of the exchequer asking for the Environment (Principles and Governance) Bill, which aims to set out how the UK maintains environmental standards post-Brexit, to provide the ’foundation for economic growth that is restorative and regenerative by design’.

In the letter (see attached), which was co-ordinated by UK Green Building Council (UKGBC), the signatories highlight the ongoing depletion of nature in the UK and call for a strong response from government.

The government, the group claims should use the Environment Bill to set legally binding targets to achieve a range of environmental objectives – including tackling biodiversity loss, improving water and air quality and cutting down resource use and waste.

UKGBC chief executive Julie Hirigoyen said: ‘This letter from a prominent group of built environment businesses calls on the chancellor to recognise that the Environment Bill is instrumental in ensuring a healthy prosperous economy in future.

‘These businesses are showing leadership by calling for legally binding targets for the achievement of environmental objectives. This will give the construction and property sector the confidence and certainty we need to help drive nature’s recovery.’

We hope this initiative will focus attention on matters neglected during the Brexit paralysis

Rab Bennetts of Bennetts Associates added: ‘We’ve long believed that we all need objective measures for environmental protection and have ourselves signed up to a UN-driven scheme for science-based targets that focus on every aspect of our business, including our design work.

’We hope that UKGBC’s initiative in lobbying the government will help focus attention on matters that have been neglected during the Brexit paralysis.’

Signatories to the letter:

Argent (Property Development) Services
Atelier Ten
BAM Construct UK
BAM Nuttall
Barratt Developments
Bennetts Associates
Berkeley Group Holdings
British Land
Clarion Housing Group
Colliers International
Hoare Lea
Kingspan Insulation
Telford Homes
William Hare
Willmott Dixon


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Readers' comments (2)

  • Great! Now is the time for a demonstration by architects, developers and builders to show what can be achieved.

    I am proposing that Brentford in London is declared a Green Suburb, with television coverage and data to follow progress and make sure it is effective. And using new financial arrangements made available by Municipal Green Bonds.

    The population around here is due to expand by 17,000 over the next 5 years if what has Planning permission is built and occupied. There are very environmentally aware architects involved; Allies and Morrison, Pollard Thomas Edwards, Broadway and Malayan amongst others. But will all the units be carbon neutral? Are the developers on board? Do they realise they could borrow finance for this at 1.15% using Green Bonds? Is the Chiswick Curve going to be acceptable to Kew Gardens and the local population? And does that local population realise what we could be starting for the benefit of the planet and the climate change agenda? The blessed London Boro of Hounslow doesn’t seem to give a damn?!

    I’m coming to talk to you this week Rab, if you’re not in Cannes!? We have to move quickly, as many of the new builds in Brentford will be on site this Spring. So let’s show what we can do. It’s a win win win?! Or am I banging my head against a brick wall?!

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  • And contact me on:


    if you can help, especially if you are already involved with the rebuilding of Brentford. I can’t do it on my own. This week Brentford, next week England, next month the post Brexit world.

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