British Association of Reinforcement
At no extra cost. Compared with other construction materials, reinforced concrete provides inherent high levels of robustness at no extra cost.



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Celsa Steel UK - The Steel Mill perspective

Celsa Steel UK is the leading manufacturer of reinforcing steel in the UK. Since beginning operations in the UK in 2003, the company has led the way in terms of quality, environment and health and safety, implementing robust, international recognised and accredited management systems in order to reduce environmental impacts while making steel production safer for employees.

It was from this desire to go further than what was merely acceptable in terms of being a responsible producer, that Celsa and a number of other UK manufacturers were in the vanguard in approaching BRE to develop what became the Eco-Reinforcement Standard.Ir was already acknowledged that being a sustainable producer would become vital to business success. However it was also recognised that being part of a sustainability focused supply chain that addressed key economic, environmental and social impacts from raw material source through to construction site, would be the only way to satisfy an ever demanding, sustainability driven construction client base.

In November 2009, Celsa became the first steel manufacturer in the world to be certified to a recognised responsible sourcing and sustainability standard, namely BES 6001 through the Eco-Reinforcement sector standard. The re-confirmation of Celsa's accreditation in 2010 with an improved rating is testament to the continuous improvement ethos and high standards set within the company.

Celsa Steel UK General Manager, Luis Sanz, responded to this great news by saying: "Whereas achieving this accreditation was a long and sometimes arduous process, the ability to now differentiate ourselves as not just market leaders, but sustainable market leaders has put Celsa in a prized and invaluable position when it comes to winning major contracts in which sustainability and responsible sourcing are key drivers.

"We are delighted to see these values represented within Crossrail, one of the most high profile projects of this decade, and are proud that our hard work has put Celsa in a leading position when it comes to supplying such a fantastic feat of engineering."

Express Reinforcements - The Reinforcing Fabricator perspective

Express Reinforcements is a leading supplier of fabricated reinforcing products to the UK market. Some time ago as a result of its continuous pursuit of market differentiation, Express Reinforcements identified a strategic need to implement a formally recognised standard of certification to establish an eco-friendly, sustainably sourced supply chain for its core product line - reinforcing steel.

For several years Express and other UK fabricators have been instrumental in the development of a sector specific scheme directly linked to the BRE Environmental & Sustainability Standard, BES6001. The Eco-Reinforcement Standard has established robust environmental and sustainable sourcing criteria allowing the objective assessment and certification of prospective suppliers to the UK reinforcing industry.

Having recognised this need early enough, Express has been able to establish procurement, manufacturing, innovation and logistical policies that are able to deliver a sustainably sourced solution whilst remaining commercially competitive in the market place. This commitment to sustainable sourcing and manufacture has been recognised and rewarded through our contribution to Crossrail, a complex project in which sustainability requirements are uncompromising.

Skanska UK - The Contractor perspective

Skanska UK first began developing a sustainable procurement policy in early 2009, stimulated in part by CEO Johan Karlstrom's stated ambition for the company to become the "leading green project developer and contractor". The policy included references to the responsible sourcing of materials, influenced by the UK Government Strategy for Sustainable Construction and the publication of BES6001 in October 2008 which both confirmed the growing importance of the subject. All the evidence suggested it would soon become a standard requirement for major projects, notably Crossrail.

The concrete sector was visibly quick to respond to the publication of BES 6001 and within a year more then 80% of production was responsibly sourced. However, Skanska was keen to offer its clients the same assurance for the next largest material stream in civils works, steel reinforcement. A challenge to long-term supplier Express Reinforcements found that the objective resonated with the company's own strategic imperatives and with those of its parent company Celsa Steel UK. Recognising a shared set of values Skanska, Express, Celsa and other like-minded partners collaborated together to form a consortium and develop the Eco-Reinforcement standard.

At the beginning of 2010 Skanska's stated ambition was to responsibly source 100% of its concrete and 80% of its steel reinforcement. Through the development of the Eco-Reinforcement standard and the subsequent certification of steel mills and fabricators we are able to deliver 100% responsibly sourced concrete and steel to Crossrail, a significant achievement.

Timeline overview

Jun 2006: Procuring the Future: Sustainable Procurement National Action Plan
Sep 2006: Feasibility study
Oct 2006: Stakeholder engagement process begins
Feb 2007: Report on stakeholder engagement; 1st development meeting with BRE
Mar 2007: UK Government Sustainable Procurement Action Plan
May 2007: 1st stakeholder meeting
Oct 2007: Sustainable Contractor of the Year
Feb 2008: CPA stakeholder meeting 1
Mar 2008: BES 6001 draft 1
Apr 2008: CPA stakeholder meeting 2
Jun 2008: Strategy for Sustainable Construction published
Aug 2008: BES 6001 draft 2; CPA stakeholder meeting 3
Oct 2008: BES 6001 published; Celsa undertakes supply chain audits
Nov 2008: CEEQUAL recognition
Dec 2008: Eco-Reinforcement stakeholder workshop; Concrete guidance published
Feb 2009: Color Palette(TM)
Apr 2009: Sustainable Procurement Policy
May 2009: Eco-Reinforcement standard published; BREEAM & CSH recognition
Jun 2009: Strategic purchasing agreement incorporating responsible sourcing; Eco-Reinforcement Scheme Council formed
Oct 2009: Skanska commitment for Eco-Reinforcement on Crossrail 100%; BS 8902 published
Nov 2009: Celsa certified ‘Pass’ rating
Jan 2010: ISO 14001 implementation progressed
Feb 2010: BRC certified ‘Good’ rating
Apr 2010: NSCS recognition; BS 8902 gap analysis on compliance published
May 2010: Eco-Reinforcement 1st purchase for Crossrail; Commitment to Eco-Reinforcement certification by August 2010
Jun 2010: UKCG over 70% by 2015
Jul 2010: Express certified ‘Good’ rating
Aug 2010: APRES launched
Sep 2010: Improved CEEQUAL recognition
Oct 2010: Royal Oak Portal
Nov 2010: Celsa BES 6001 certified for all steel products ‘Good’ rating
Feb 2011: Pudding Mill Lane Portal
Mar 2011: Celsa and Skanska join APRES
Jun 2011: Bond Street; Skanska 1st Sunday Times Best Green Companies Award; Skanska CIPS accredited and BS 8903 compliant
Jul 2011: ROM certified ‘Good’ Rating; Improved BREEAM recognition through 2011 launch; Paddington Station
Aug 2011: Limmo Shaft
Sep 2011: Skanska 2011 CIPS Corporate Responsibility Award
Nov 2011: 1st APRES Conference; 1st Eco-Reinforcement case study launched

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Concrete Reinforcement Company Renews ISO 14001 Environmental Accreditation

For a second year, concrete reinforcement specialist Hy-Ten has been awarded ISO14001:2004 accreditation for its nine UK manufacturing sites. Recognised as the gold standard in environmental performance, the award requires companies to reduce their environmental impact in all areas of the business. This involves looking at all material and energy inputs to the business, all waste streams and all internal processes so that carbon dioxide emissions, energy use and materials going to landfill are all continuously reduced.

Director, Richard Webster, who runs a major manufacturing unit in Bootle and is responsible for the site accreditation, explained, "Achieving the ISO accreditation has been an enlightening experience. This has forced us to address issues in our daily operations that were not previously considered. As a result we have become a leaner and more efficient company. Consequently we are more competitive and in-tune with the standards that contractors expect and their clients demand."

Practical steps to greater efficiency taken by Hy-Ten include the installation of separate boilers to handle different heating loads more efficiently. The company has improved insulation, monitors electricity use on a half hourly basis and has more efficient recording and monitoring of vehicle mileage. In addition, employees are far more conscious of fuel and oil storage and handling to avoid spillage. New systems have been put in place to recover and recycle office and factory waste.

"The achievement of the environmental standard is not a single event. It kick-starts a continuous process that changes attitudes to waste and creates a new culture in the business where environmental impact of everything that we do is a primary concern," Richard concluded.

The ISO assessments at Hy-Ten were undertaken by CARES, the Certification Authority for Reinforced Steel.

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