Supply Chain School

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Energy and Carbon

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The consumption of energy is directly linked to carbon emissions. The primary source of carbon emissions come from the combustion of fossil fuels. It is now widely accepted that the high levels of Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere are due to human activity; most significantly since the industrial revolution; are contributing to Climate Change.

Through the Climate Change Act, UK Government has committed the UK to an ambitious 80% cut in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 based on 1990 levels. As such, the UK is now the first country in the world to adopt a long-term legal framework for reducing emissions through a system of "five-year" carbon budgets, providing a clear pathway towards this 2050 target.

The Infrastructure Carbon Review aims to release the value of lower carbon solutions and to make carbon reduction part of the ongoing practice of the Infrastructure sector. There is a strong emphasis on how cost reduction actually reduces project costs both during construction and maintenance.

Carbon emissions from day to day use are however only part of the story, we must also consider the embodied carbon – that is the amount of carbon released from material extraction, transport, manufacturing, and related activities.

There is now a greater focus on energy use for many businesses with the creation of the Energy Savings Opportunities Scheme (ESOS). There are strong links to this issue and the wider concept of resource efficiency. 
 

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