CM asked company bosses whether green initiatives are being scaled back in the face of the economic downturn

This is driven by the demands of the end user, tenant or purchaser and they still have a hunger for environmental issues. In the public sector, which remains well funded, local authorities and higher and further education institutions need a minimum ‘excellent’ BREEAM rating to comply with funding covenants or to attract regional development agency and European regional development funds. Equally, developers recognise the need to provide environmentally friendly buildings when they are seeking preferred developer status with a public authority.

It might also be argued that the long-term savings created by sustainably designed buildings when in use lessens the impact of the credit crunch.

Malcolm Smith, GVA Grimley

It would understandable for the industry to think of sustainability as a ‘frothy’ nice-to-have that could become a victim of any belt tightening. However,

the current economic situation has not changed my firm’s commitment to environmental sustainability, nor to the increasing demands being put upon us, particularly by public sector clients.

Guy Fairweather, ISG Jackson

An economic downturn should not have a moral effect on contractors’ commitment. Sustainability makes good economic sense to any business.

Areas such as waste management, transport and, dare I say it, lean construction are paramount to the success of any construction business or project and its profitability.

Mike Smith, Corniche Builders