Gleeson commits to setting science based carbon reduction targets and launches Biodiversity Strategy

Gleeson commits to setting science based carbon reduction targets and launches Biodiversity Strategy

MJ Gleeson plc, the low-cost housebuilder and land promoter, is pleased to announce two further significant developments in its sustainability journey: its commitment to setting science based carbon emission reduction targets, as well as the launch of its Biodiversity Strategy.

Setting Science Based Carbon Reduction Targets

The Company has committed to the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), meaning it will set targets for validation by the SBTi within two years. The SBTi is a partnership between the Carbon Disclosure Project, United Nations Global Compact, World Wildlife Fund and World Resources Initiative and is currently the most widely recognised pathway to decarbonisation. It is aligned to the Paris Agreement’s objective to work together worldwide to limit the global temperature increase to 1.5°C from pre-industrial levels.

Following an extensive internal review of its Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions, Gleeson has identified, and is in the process of finalising, a number of core workstreams to reduce its carbon emissions under the SBTi, as well as agreeing the key reporting milestones within this process. This demonstrates the Group’s ongoing commitment to direct climate action, through decarbonisation across its operations, supply chain and in-use emissions alike.

New Biodiversity Strategy

In addition to this, Gleeson has launched its biodiversity strategy, with the help of the employment of a Senior Ecologist. Through this, the Company is committing to going beyond its regulatory obligations, such as biodiversity net gain requirements, not only to preserve the ecology where it operates but also to help it thrive.

Initiatives include planting beneficial wildlife, with a focus on invertebrates and pollinators, and providing food and protection for local animals, as well as the inclusion of bird and bat boxes and hedgehog highways on developments across the UK. All welcome packs for new homeowners also include a bug hotel, wildflower seeds and an electronic guide to attracting wildlife into their new garden.

Matt Gibb, Group Sustainability Manager at MJ Gleeson, commented:

“We are very excited about today’s announcement. Gleeson has been working hard on understanding and eliminating both emitted and embedded greenhouse gases in its construction activities for a number of years, and expects to confirm the targets agreed with the SBTi well within the two year timetable. Meanwhile, the benefits of our Biodiversity Strategy will be felt across all of our developments moving forward, as we continue to create high-quality, affordable homes and communities where our customers love to live.”

Stefan Allanson, Chief Financial Officer at MJ Gleeson, commented:

“We are delighted to be making significant progress in our sustainability journey, led by our Group Sustainability Manager, Matt Gibb, who we welcomed into the business last year, and supported fully by our leadership team and Board. Committing to the SBTi represents a significant milestone, and we look forward to sharing more on this over coming months. Our new Biodiversity Strategy is industry leading, and will help us to provide greater protection and support for local wildlife on and around our developments.

We have a strong understanding of where we are as a business in terms of our ESG credentials, with our core mission remaining fully aligned with UN Sustainable Development Goal 11. We are proud that a couple on the UK National Living Wage can still afford to buy a home on any Gleeson Homes site, and we look forward to providing more detail on our progress in the months and years ahead.”