Berkeley is proud to have come top of the Next Generation benchmark, published today. This measures the performance of the largest 25 housebuilders in Britain in terms of sustainability. Berkeley has been ranked first for the last eight years in a row.
"The agenda has shifted from a narrow focus on carbon reduction to creating successful places," says Rob Perrins, Berkeley's Managing Director. "It's about integrating social sustainability, job creation and environmental management.
For example, every Berkeley site now uses a toolkit we published in February to measure people's quality of life. You can see the results at Woodberry Down in Hackney, where 71% of people feel able to influence local decisions compared to an average of 40% across Britain.
At the same time, we've reduced carbon emissions on site by 21% per person over the past two years and achieved a 69% reduction in energy use at Berkeley's head office. We're also monitoring the performance of the homes we build, trialling thermographic surveys and comparisons of energy use in design and in practice on sites like the Royal Arsenal in Woolwich.
Looking ahead, I think the real challenge for housebuilders is not to compete with each other but to match the performance of other sectors. Companies like BT, Kingfisher and Puma are making huge strides on sustainability. In a buoyant market, every developer should take sustainability that seriously."