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28 March 2024
Built Environment

Bouygues UK Sets New Standards with Biodiversity and Carbon Reduction at Pentre Awel

Biodiversity at Pentre Awel is expected to increase by 137% by project completion, thanks to the work of the scheme’s building contractor Bouygues UK.

Bouygues UK has put carbon reduction, sustainability and the environment at the heart of everything it is doing at the site in Llanelli, which has resulted in not only a net increase in biodiversity but also a 18.4% reduction in carbon savings.

Pentre Awel is being delivered by Carmarthenshire County Council and the entire development will bring together life science and business innovation, community healthcare and modern leisure facilities within 83-acres of land on the Llanelli coastline.

As well as an increase in biodiversity, Bouygues UK’s site team at Pentre Awel has also received top marks in the Considerate Constructors Scheme (CCS) assessment, honouring the projects’ commitment to sustainability and social value. It’s the second time the project has received full marks for the Considerate Constructors Scheme, which helps support the construction industry to raise its standards in being a considerate constructor and build trust with the public.

The site team at Pentre Awel has scored 45/45 across all the examination criteria including Respect for the Community (15/15), Care for the Environment (15/15) and Valuing our Workforce (15/15) in the CCS assessment.

The report praised the prolific energy saving initiatives on the project, including carbon reduction initiatives and the 100% use of HVO fuel. It reported that a “positive environmental legacy will remain after completion of the works via the extensive landscaping scheduled.”

Throughout the landmark project, Pentre Awel’s team has worked closely with stakeholders, including Carmarthenshire County Council’s ecology officers and Natural Resources Wales to ensure the development does not impact on the ecology and waterbodies that surround the site.

Following pre-construction ecology surveys, Bouygues UK put measures in place to safeguard reptiles, water vole, otters, nesting birds and bats during the works. Biodiversity net gain is a strategy to develop land and contribute to the recovery of nature. It is a way of making sure the habitat for wildlife is in a better state than it was before development. A recent ecological report has shown that the site, on Delta Lakes in Llanelli, will likely achieve a 137% biodiversity net gain by completion.

As well as ensuring the wildlife are well protected on the construction site, the site team has strictly followed the 8m exclusion zone, going above and beyond to ensuring the nearby Afon Dafen is not polluted by any construction runoff.

There is also a Project Environmental Champion who ensures all fencing around the silt is fit for purpose during the construction period, regular visits from ecologists and preventative measures carried out, like minimising lighting at night to avoid impacting bats, for example.

Bouygues UK has also engaged with staff and its supply chain to be as sustainable as possible during the build, targeting 24 specific initiatives to help reduce carbon emissions, waste and energy for the duration of the project. The team have partnered with Gaia, a Carmarthenshire-based company that helps to identify, monitor and reduce power consumption, using AI and motion sensor software. There is a carbon consultant to advise throughout the construction, as well as quarterly monitoring of carbon and waste and climate training to the supply chain.

Bouygues UK’s Sustainability and Environment Manager Simon Hazel said:

“What we do on reducing carbon here at Pentre Awel compliments Bouygues UK’s wider Climate and Environment strategy. We go over and above to secure and protect biodiversity and habitats through long term climate change mitigation, in the hope that this will lead to long term prosperity on site.

“It is all well and good to protect and improve biodiversity but if the impacts of greenhouse gases continue to devastate, there will be less of a chance that these habitats will thrive so we need to also ensure we are doing what we can to reduce carbon and other gases to an absolute minimum, which is what we’ve implemented here at Pentre Awel.”

Bouygues UK has committed to diverting 98% of waste from landfill. Excavated material and soil from the surface of the site has been taken to a local recycling facility where the material can be segregated, treated and reused, reducing the amount of waste going to landfill.

Peter Sharpe, Bouygues UK’s Pentre Awel Project Director, added:

“A project of this scale does not come without environmental challenges, but the biodiversity and carbon reduction figures highlight the work of the whole team in ensuring sustainability remains high on our agenda. To also receive full marks in the CCS assessment for the second time reflects the exceptional delivery standards that we have at Bouygues UK.”

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