Canary Wharf Group commits to net zero pathway for concrete with launch of industry forum to accelerate progress – 05.07.22

  • Canary Wharf Group is a founding member of the forum, which pledges to drive down the emissions of concrete
  • The forum, launched on 5 July, will harness its collective power to accelerate the evolution of the world’s most widely used material
  • The forum will work towards a goal of net zero concrete by 2050, underpinning Canary Wharf Group’s own net zero ambition of 2030

Canary Wharf Group (“CWG”), the developer behind the iconic mixed-use neighbourhood in London, has helped to establish an alliance that will accelerate progress towards net zero in the construction industry and for all industries globally by decarbonising concrete.

Hosted by CWG, the international ConcreteZero initiative launched today will drive concrete’s transition to net zero by 2050 acknowledging that, while concrete is critical to the built environment, it is also one of the world’s largest emitters of carbon. ConcreteZero brings together an influential group of major developers, engineers, customers and contractors who commit to collaborate to achieve the 2050 target, and to sharing data and research to accelerate industry progress.

CWG has been working with its supply chain to pioneer ways to reduce the emissions of concrete in its buildings. At its latest Wood Wharf development, CWG has collaborated with London Concrete, Arup Geotech, Ramboll and Thornton Tomasetti and O’Halloran & O’Brien to develop ideas and follow these through into the construction phase. The findings so far suggest concrete carbon emissions can already be reduced by as much as 30%, depending on the method and application.

Concrete is the most widely used material in the world and responsible for around 7% of global carbon emissions, equaling the emissions of the entire transport sector. Its exceptional versatility and unique strength in a world that continues to urbanise means use is expected to increase, making decarbonisation essential to the achievement of a net zero carbon global economy.

There is no singular, simple solution to achieving the goal of net zero concrete by 2050 and it will take multiple paths across the industry to reach it. By becoming a founding member of ConcreteZero, as new forms of lower carbon concrete are pioneered CWG commits to purchase increasing proportions for its developments, collaborating with other members to accelerate progress and help the industry to reach net zero concrete by 2050 or sooner. Canary Wharf Group’s own net zero target is 2030, and decarbonising concrete is a critical step in achieving this goal.

Shobi Khan, CEO, CWG said: “Concrete is critical to the built environment, but also one of the world’s largest emitters of carbon. If we’re to meet the objectives of the Paris Agreement it is essential that organisations in and around the construction sector collaborate to find a sustainable solution in our industry, fast.

I am proud that Canary Wharf Group is taking action to make the built environment work for people and the planet.  We look forward to collaborating with the 15 other founding members of ConcreteZero to accelerate the reduction of carbon emissions from concrete and, ultimately, eliminate the environmental impact of construction.”

Jen Carson, Head of Industry, said: “By launching ConcreteZero we’re doubling down on our efforts to get the highest emitting industries to net zero. Steel and concrete production together emit the same level of CO2 as all road transport globally, and with demand for both going up, this is only set to increase. Targeting the concrete industry was therefore a no brainer.

We’re delighted to have Canary Wharf Group as the first business to join ConcreteZero. Canary Wharf Group has been instrumental in shaping the campaign’s ambition and turning it into action. We need other businesses to show the same bold leadership, and follow in their footsteps to truly accelerate the net zero transition of the concrete industry”


For further information, please contact:

Press Office
Canary Wharf Group plc
T: 020 7418 2166

Notes to Editors

About Canary Wharf Group:

Canary Wharf Group (CWG) is the developer of the largest urban regeneration project in Europe. CWG develops, manages and currently owns interests in approximately 9 million square feet of mixed-use space and over 1,100 Build to Rent apartments. 

CWG is the largest sustainable developer in the UK and also excels operationally as it has purchased 100% electricity from renewable sources since 2012 and sent zero waste to landfill since 2009. 

CWG has created a 24/7 city where people can live, work and thrive on the Canary Wharf estate and enjoy all the benefits: great transport links, access to green spaces and waterside living; and a wide range of amenities including an award-winning arts and events programme. Canary Wharf’s retail offering comprises over 300 shops, including grocery stores, pharmacies, health clubs, bars and restaurants, all within 15 minutes’ walk. 

The Company’s current £2bn construction activity and pipeline includes more than 500k square feet NIA of commercial properties and over 2,300 new homes for sale and rent.
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