Sustainability at core of Carillion service

Published on Monday, 17 October 2011 09:41
Posted by Jon Swinney

Carillion has been named in the top 10 of the highly competitive Sunday Times “Best Green Companies” Awards for 2011. John Swinney, Carillion’s Business Development Director for the Public Sector, believes that as well as reflecting Carillion’s own community support and sustainability credentials, the award recognises the company’s innovative programmes to help other organisations meet their sustainability objectives

At Carillion we have shaped our businesses as a leading sustainability support services provider – developing solutions with our partners to drive down carbon, reduce waste, source materials responsibly and make genuine contributions to sustainable communities.

Through our energy services business, for example, we work with a range of housing providers to make their housing stock more energy efficient. This is good for landlords facing tough carbon cutting targets – but it is equally good for the homeowners who benefit from warmer, greener and more affordable to heat homes. We have been doing this at scale for the past 20 years.

Recently, we have also pioneered transformational finance initiatives to drive the uptake of clean energy, such as solar, and to make low carbon living even more accessible and mainstream. In particular, our Clean Energy Programme has raised £300 million of debt and private equity to fund the installation of up to 37,000 free solar PV systems for social housing residents.

The ground-breaking business model utilises the Feed-in-Tariff to raise private finance and provide a return for our funding partners; Infrared Capital, Barclays Infrastructure Funds, RBS, Lloyds Banking Group, National Australia Bank and Santander. This in turn allows Carillion to build an end-to-end delivery model for social housing providers to upgrade and decarbonise parts of their housing stock while their residents can receive free electricity – cost and risk free.

Against a backdrop of rising energy costs the benefits are obvious – and sustainable. Isle of Wight householder and Southern Housing Group resident Brenda Clews-Cartwright noticed a difference immediately. She said as soon the panels were their quarterly electricity bills went from around £92 down to £50. In the current economic climate this is a big deal and she is enormously grateful to Southern Housing for offering the initiative. Mrs Clews-Cartwright is also not alone. Furthermore, we are seeing householders change the way they use energy to maximise the savings from free electricity. I suspect these behavioural changes toward low carbon lifestyles will increase rapidly over the next few years – presenting new opportunities and challenges.

The private finance model is making clean energy available to a much wider customer base and far more socially inclusive. As the first and largest finance model of its type it is also a framework that can be repeated.

Building on this success and taking sustainability to the next stage Carillion has also invested in a training academy to give young people the green skills they will need to prosper. Providing apprenticeship and vocational qualifications in energy services, including renewables, is boosting job prospects at a local level and in turn contributing toward more sustainable and socially cohesive communities. Our Academy, which is based in Bedford, will also be used to support partnerships with organisations such as Jobcentre plus, Business Action on Homelessness (BAoH), the Princes Trust and Work Programme providers. In addition it will include apprenticeship frameworks for the “Green Deal” energy efficiency loan scheme.
It is worth noting that the Government has said there are now a million jobs in the UK’s low carbon economy, and that a further 250,000 jobs are expected to be created by the Green Deal.

Supporting sustainable communities is not confined to energy services business – it is embedded right throughout the Carillion Group with more than 50,000 employees and operations across the UK, Canada, the Middle East and North Africa.
To illustrate this Carillion is Birmingham City Council’s construction partner on the striking new Library of Birmingham. Due to be completed in 2013, the £188.8 million building is set to become one of Europe’s largest and most iconic libraries. It is being billed as re-writing the book for 21st century public libraries.

As part of the construction phase, and in partnership with our supply chain partners, Carillion will create 250 local employment opportunities – including 75 apprenticeships and 30 BAoH places. Working with Birmingham City Council’s Employment Access Team, the apprenticeship opportunities in Birmingham are also targeting some of the hardest to reach groups across the city, including those claiming benefits. We have also given valuable work experience to individuals who have served prison sentences – offering them a genuine turning point in their lives and further demonstrating how sustainable communities are core to Carillion’s work.


For more information please contact Rik Kendall, Media Relations Manager at Carillion, on 0191 245 8342, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Notes to editors:

Carillion is a leading support services company with a substantial portfolio of Public Private Partnership projects and extensive construction capabilities.  The Group had annual revenue in 2010 of £5.1 billion, employs around 50,000 people and operates across the UK, in the Middle East and Canada.  

The Group has four business segments.

Support services, which include facilities management, facilities services, energy services, utility services, road maintenance, rail services and consultancy services.

Public Private Partnership (PPP) projects, which includes our investing activities in PPP projects in our chosen sectors of Defence, Health, Education, Transport, Secure and other Government accommodation.

Middle East construction services, which includes our building and civil engineering activities in the Middle East.

Construction services (excluding the Middle East), which includes our building, civil engineering and developments activities in the UK and our construction activities in Canada.

On 21 April, Carillion acquired Eaga plc, which has been rebranded Carillion Energy Services (CES).  CES Services is a leading independent energy services provider and one of the largest installers of renewable technologies in the UK.  CES employs around 4,500 people and operates across three main markets: carbon services where CES is a market leader in the provision of carbon savings to energy generators and utilities to assist them in meeting their regulatory obligations; Heating and Renewables Services where CES is one of the largest installers of domestic heating and renewable technologies; and Managed Services where CES provides outsourced solutions to a range of customers.

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