Press Release

Ready, set, go: Balfour Beatty joins the United Nation’s Race To Zero campaign

18 August 2021


Balfour Beatty, the international infrastructure group, today announces that it has joined the UN-backed Race To Zero campaign.

This alliance sees non-state actors across the global economy committing to take rigorous and immediate action to halve emissions by 2030 and achieve net zero emissions by 2050 at the latest, in line with the global race to limit rising temperatures to 1.5°C.

This latest pledge builds on Balfour Beatty’s Group-wide Sustainability strategy, “Building New Futures”, in which the company committed to minimising the environmental impact of its operations across the UK, US and Hong Kong. Having already reduced its carbon emissions by 54.7% since 2010, the company has now committed to halving its 2020 carbon emissions by 2030, including scope 3 emissions.

As part of its journey to build a better, more sustainable future, the company is collating its carbon data for the official submission to the Science Based Target Initiative and is already taking action to achieve both its 2030 target and 2040 ambition to Go Beyond Net Zero Carbon; introducing electric vehicles and plant and implementing the first-of-its-kind retrofit exhaust technology to reduce its carbon emissions.

The company also continually innovates and collaborates with its industry partners to develop new technologies such as Econet, a state-of-the-art technology to manage the power supply of site compounds reducing carbon emissions by up to 80%, and a carbon calculator which can automatically calculate embodied carbon from building information models.

Leo Quinn, Balfour Beatty Group Chief Executive, said: “Today we’re joining the UN-backed Race To Zero campaign. On a global basis it reflects our own commitment: not only to move our business forward strongly and sustainably, but also to deploy Balfour Beatty’s green capabilities to help deliver the infrastructure for a net zero world”.

Nigel Topping, UN High Level Climate Action Champion, said: “I’m delighted to see that Balfour Beatty, a leading international infrastructure company, has joined the Race To Zero through our Partner initiative Business Ambition for 1.5C.

“I welcome Balfour Beatty’s commitment to the net zero agenda: its high ambition and leadership light the way for others in the industry to take action towards halving emissions by 2030. I hope that Balfour Beatty’s commitment will inspire others to also step up in this race towards a more resilient, zero carbon world.”

Balfour Beatty has long been at the vanguard of sustainability having launched its first Group-wide strategy in 2009. Last year, the company introduced its refreshed sustainability strategy “Building New Futures”, which sets bold 2030 targets and 2040 ambitions to Go Beyond Net Zero Carbon, Generate Zero Waste and Positively Impact More than 1 Million People.


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Jessica Savage
Balfour Beatty
+44 (0)203 810 2345 | follow us @balfourbeatty

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Notes to editors:

  • Balfour Beatty ( is a leading international infrastructure group with 26,000 employees driving the delivery of powerful new solutions, shaping thinking, creating skylines and inspiring a new generation of talent to be the change-makers of tomorrow.  
  • We finance, develop, build, maintain and operate the increasingly complex and critical infrastructure that supports national economies and deliver projects at the heart of local communities. 
  • Over the last 112 years we have created iconic buildings and infrastructure all over the world including: the £1.5 billion A14 improvement scheme - Britain’s biggest road project; Hong Kong’s HK$5.5 billion world-class harbour theatre project for the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority; and the 12.5 mile $429 million North Metro Commuter Rail line in Colorado, US.
  • In December 2020, we launched our refreshed sustainability strategy, “Building New Futures”, which sets out our ambitions to achieve net zero emissions, generate zero waste and positively impact over one million people by 2040.
  • The strategy focusses on three specific areas – the Environment, Materials and Communities – with each area assigned a 2040 ambition. To guide us in our journey to achieve these ambitions, Balfour Beatty will be reporting annually on each area, with defined 2030 targets to ensure the Group is on track to achieve its 2040 ambitions.
  • Balfour Beatty is committed to leaving a legacy in the communities in which we operate, working with local supply chain partners wherever possible, investing in local community initiatives and building the workforce of the future through apprenticeship schemes and work placement opportunities.
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