Hard Surfaces 2023

Net Zero –
written in stone

Tuesday 23 February

The UK government became the first major economy to enshrine in law a 2050 Net Zero target for greenhouse gas emissions. The target cannot be reached without a significant contribution from industry. This session looks at how progressive companies in the stone industry are working towards it.

View the session video:

Sessions included:

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  1. As one of the world’s foremost quarriers of natural stone, Polycor has continued its embrace of sustainable practices leading to last year’s announcement that the group will become carbon neutral by 2025. In this presentation, Bryan will discuss how Polycor came to this decision and outline the initiatives they are putting in place to achieve this ambitious goal in such a relatively short timeframe. As the construction industry continues its hard lean into sustainability and searches for truly low-carbon materials in light of the looming climate crisis, the stone industry will need to be ready with the know-how, credentials, and informational tools to respond to this growing demand.  
  2. With short haulage routes to our markets and one of the most highly regulated industries in the world, dimension stone from British mines and quarries should be top of the list for environmentally sensitive products, as it is simply cut from the faces into its final product, no other processes.   

    Albion Sone have made a massive investment in decarbonising our extraction and manufacturing processes. It began with a switch from Quarrying to Mining 25 years ago and has continued with targeting energy usage as its the focus, with diesel being the real enemy.   We have installed solar panels, switched from generators to mains power from renewable sources at our mines and are now continuing to re-evaluate our entire manufacturing process.  

    We have committed to moving as close to Zero Carbon as possible by 2025, we are already 60% below the European average for dimension stone, but plan to reduce this figure by a further 50%.

  3. Re-using recovered stone as street furniture and cutting the stone from a retained façade in half to re-clad a rebuild, then using the other half on the rest of the building is all par for the course for PAYE. The company has embarked on Scope Three of its move to Net Zero, removing as much carbon as possible from its work on site by using electric vehicles and machinery and HVO (hydro-treated vegetable oil) to power generators. Digital technology is also playing its part in PAYE’s drive to greener contracting. PAYE Director Robert Greer explains the threefold reasoning for the carbon-cutting moves: 1) clients expect it; 2) as others enter Scope Three they look at their supply chains; 3) It’s the right thing to do for the sake of future generations. 

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