Climate Change and Construction Overview

HOW OFF-SITE MANUFACTURING CANOFFSET CLIMATE CHANGE RISKS The construction industry is responding to climate change in various ways, including sustainable building design and operation and green construction practices on site. Modern methods of construction, such as offsite manufacturing (OSM), have a key role to play in this. OSM has the potential to: – Reduce waste materials, over-ordering and contingent ordering thereby reducing CO2 emissions from the manufacture of such materials – Reduce on-site labour and materials and associated CO2 emissions from the transportation of personnel and materials to site – Lead to more energy efficient buildings through precision manufacturing and reduced defects in construction – Reduce emissions from cement through the use of precast concrete and alternative materials Over the past year, Clyde & Co have been looking closely at industry and legal perspectives on the potential use of OSM in UK construction.


Clyde & Co have been focusing on the changing legal landscape around climate change, for example in the areas of liability, regulations, governance and disclosures (such as the TCFD recommendations). We recognise the importance of this to the infrastructure sector and are keen to partner with our clients to help identify risks and potential opportunities their businesses face. Some of the work we have already done in this area includes:

Following on from our ‘ Innovation in Construction ’ report, which brought together industry and legal perspectives on the potential use of OSM in UK construction, we have recently been focusing on its role in procurement structures and strategies, contract negotiations and supply chain management in relation to climate change. It is clear that modern methods of construction and OSM have the potential to help the industry tackle its impact on the climate. It is imperative for construction businesses to adapt their business models to manage their exposure to the risks that climate change legislation may cause.

Developing a Climate Risk team to help clients understand their current risks, prepare their business for future risks, and evolve in a way to capitalise on opportunities that will come with shifting to a low-carbon economy

Launching our Resilience Hub to assist business leaders in understanding the importance of resilience awareness and to provide guidance on risk management and regulatory issues

We are a founding member of the Coalition for Climate Resilient

Working with Chapter Zero: The Directors’ Climate Forum

Investment, launched at the UN Climate Action Summit in New York, which aims to transform infrastructure investment by integrating climate risks into political and financial decision-making Over the next year, our Projects & Construction team will be continuing to focus on climate change risk management and mitigation for our clients

Nigel Brook Partner, London T +44 (0)20 7876 4414 E Robert Meakin Partner, London T +44 (0) 20 7876 4249 E Liz Jenkins Partner, London T +44 (0)20 7876 4248 E

Significant research and thought leadership; for example considering how new laws and regulations, strategic litigation and duties of care emerging in response to climate change are giving rise to new liability risks. Find out more at


1137172 – December 2019

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