What is Sustainability and Sustainable Development?
Sustainability is defined by the 1987 Brundtland Commission report for the United Nations as "meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
”It is a broad concept which is commonly agreed to cover three dimensions being the environment, the economy, and social welfare.
Overlapping with these dimensions is the concept of sustainable development and the need to prioritise the environment ahead of short-term profits.
The key to sustainable development is to find the best way of delivering property with due care and consideration to not only limit the environmental impact of construction but also enhance the natural surroundings in a way that benefits the local economy and improves and enhances the experience of its users.
What are Gentian’s sustainability goals?
Our sustainability goals are to decarbonise our business; to become net zero carbon by 2030; design climate change resilient properties; and create a lasting positive social impact in the communities where we develop our buildings.
De-carbonise and become net zero by 2030
Design climate change resilient properties
Create a lasting positive social impact in the communities where we develop our buildings
How does Gentian approach Sustainable Development?
When constructing / refurbishing buildings consideration is given to reducing the consumption and waste of materials and, wherever possible, using recycled products. Each project is built to incorporate energy saving initiatives to reduce our client’s reliance on fossil fuels and minimise their energy waste.
We believe that the internal design is just as key as the fabric of the building. The inside of any building needs to provide its user with a positive experience and promote mental wellbeing through well-thought-out lighting, sensitive décor and aesthetic furniture, where applicable.
Gentian works closely with innovative green technology companies in order to offer our clients the latest initiatives to help towards their carbon reduction goals. Technology such as EV charging points, battery storage, solar panels, plastic bottle recycling vending machines and waste-to-energy facilities are just some of the products we can implement.Gentian strives to comply with the relevant environmental and social legislation and guidance including the Climate Change Act and Part L of the Building Regulations and aim to achieve EPC ‘A’ ratings where possible.
An example of Gentian’s approach to sustainable development is our project at Sturt Farm in Burford. Here we are redeveloping a dilapidated farmstead to provide 11 residential units and six holiday lets, carefully considering the materials being used and the environmental impact of the project.
Each unit will have LED lights throughout, hot water underfloor heating powered by an air source heat pump, water via a bore hole and landscaped gardens using turf from local companies and stone from local quarries. All units have achieved an EPC ‘B’ rating.
Approximately 250 trees have been planted at Sturt Farm, with the final figure expected to be close to 300 trees, in order to limit the environmental impact the development has on the local area and Gentian’s business as a whole.
Sustainability and the NHS
The NHS has implemented an ambitious strategy to become the World’s first net Zero national health service, with two mains goals:
- For the emissions they control directly (the NHS Carbon Footprint), they will reach net zero by 2040, with an ambition to reach an 80% reduction by 2028 to 2032;
- For the emissions they can influence (the NHS Carbon Footprint Plus), they will reach net zero by 2045, with an ambition to reach an 80% reduction by 2036 to 2039.
We work closely with the NHS throughout the internal design stage of our buildings to create an environment that enhances the experience for healthcare workers, patients and visitors when visiting or working in the hospital. Particular focus is given to maximising natural light, using aesthetically stimulating materials, increasing circulation space and providing relaxing dwell areas, amongst other criteria.
In order to achieve this, Gentian works closely with the NHS to produce and implement sustainable initiatives. We can implement the latest green technologies to the NHS both within their existing buildings and in new construction projects going forward. We provide free energy assessments to NHS Trusts with the appropriate advice on how to deal with any issues highlighted.