Global reporting rules proposed for construction carbon

By Mike Hayes06 July 2021

Coalition of industry organisations calls for ‘toolkit’ to minimise the carbon footprint of projects

Excavator Foto: MaxSafaniuk

A group of almost 50 construction industry organisations is set to produce the world’s first international standard for reporting carbon emissions on construction projects.

The ICMS (International Cost Management Standard) has published a consultation draft, with a stated aim of achieving global consistency in presenting construction life cycle costs and carbon emissions.

The coalition hopes that, following consultation, the standard will be taken up by the industry and used to minimise the carbon footprint of construction projects.

Once the final version of the standard is published, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (one of the organising bodies) will also produce a document detailing a universal methodology for calculating carbon emissions.

Alan Muse of RICS and ICMS

Together, the group says the publications will become a toolkit for industry professionals, allowing them to realise net-zero-carbon construction by 2050 – a crucial step if the goals of the Paris Agreement are to be achieved.

Alan Muse, head of construction standards at RICS and ICMS lead, said, “Supported by the latest tech these new standards provide a professional toolkit to measure and consistently report on carbon and influence the most basic design and construction decisions.

“The new rules ask the industry to challenge themselves on every decision made – from choosing between double or triple glazing in new homes to the type of concrete used to lay track for high speed rail.

“While other aspects such as cost and safety will continue to play a key factor, of equal importance will be ensuring a greener future for the global construction sector”.

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