Pressure on water resources is growing. While 2014 was a tough year for flooding in the UK, drought prevailed in many of our operating regions such as the Middle East and North Africa region.

We have active Water Audits and Reduction Plans across our business units on top of measuring our international usage. Innovation in water use reduction leads to project efficiencies and better returns for clients. In MENA, where water is scarce and desalinisation costly, we have conducted audits and installed waterless urinals. We also continue to use a curing compound for concrete across building projects, which significantly reduces water use and a network of trained water champions drive behaviour change.

Saving water, carbon and waste

Thousands of plastic bottles and transport miles have been saved thanks to clear thinking on the Shell project in Ras Laffan Industrial City (RLIC) project north of Doha.

Water used to be delivered to workers in the plant in 30-litre insulated containers and we were delivering in excess of 7,500 bottles per day. With our water sampling expertise, we determined that the water available from RLIC was of drinking quality. Following blind tasting sessions, tap-source water was favoured so we created a worker drinking station in an old building. This follows the earlier introduction of water dispensers against 350ml bottled water.

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Water consumption (includes operational and Carillion offices)

UK 22%

MENA 78%

Canada 0%

Water consumption chart
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Saving water in drought regions

The Madinat Jumeirah project in Dubai has implemented several sustainability initiatives during construction, resulting in water, carbon and cost savings. They include:

  • use of non-potable groundwater to meet the moisture content requirements during backfilling, reducing fuel consumption from water tankers and saving approximately 462,962 gallons of fresh water or AED 54,280 (£10,000);
  • around 46,000m3 of excess excavated sand was given to Dubai Municipality to replenish Umm Suqeim beach; and
  • connecting to the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority mains, reducing fuel consumption associated with using generators and saving approximately AED 2 million (c. £360,000).
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Our water consumption

We measure and record water use on a quarterly basis. Across our operations, we have robust water reduction plans to help each contract identify activities that use significant water and develop an action plan to reduce consumption.

In our own offices we have direct control and influence over our water use and have collected data on this across our operations since 2012. The Carillion Estate water consumption increased by 12% compared to 2012 baseline, due to the acquisition of new buildings. Our focus for 2015 will be on driving behaviour change among employees.

Our water consumption on construction sites decreased in 2014 by 28% compared to the 2012 baseline year, reflecting our focus on using water-saving technologies more widely, and continuing to recommend sustainable designs such as rainwater harvesting to our design and construction clients. Going forward, we will learn from successful water reduction techniques applied in our Middle East business.

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Harvesting rainwater

At Harvey Hadden, we are constructing a swimming pool to Olympic standards. Once the pool structure and balancing tanks were complete, the team considered how they could reduce the amount of mains water that was required to fill the pool ready for testing.

A worker engagement idea resulted in harvesting rainwater into the balancing tanks, then pumping the collected water into the main pool. The team pumped 450m3 of water from balancing tanks, which in simple terms was the equivalent of ‘flushing the toilet’ 75,000 times. This simple idea really showed that through engagement we could reduce the impact on water usage by harvesting the water naturally.

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7,500 plastic bottles saved thanks to a new worker drinking station on Ras Laffan Industrial City project, Doha

We are constantly seeking new ways of working with materials, technology and clients, despite often very challenging circumstances; it’s critical that we do whatever we can to reuse waste material and to continue our significant progress in reducing water use.”

Shaun Carter, Group Strategy Director, Carillion Plc

Carillion plc, Company No. 3782379. Registered Office: Carillion House, 84 Salop Street, Wolverhampton WV3 0SR. Place of Registration: England and Wales

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