26 Nov 2020
The Australian arm of multi-disciplinary consulting company Cundall has been chosen as the local nomination for the World Green Building Council’s (WGBC) APAC Leadership in Green Buildings Awards. We spoke to David Clark, Director and Partner, about why Cundall nominated for the Business Leadership in Sustainability Award and how sustainability influences the way Cundall does business.
The WGBC’s Business Leadership in Green Buildings Awards celebrate companies that have made sustainability part of their core business model and are contributing to the transition towards a sustainable built environment. As an engineering and consultancy practice with a strong history of leading in sustainability, Cundall is no exception.
David Clark was one of the original authors of the first version of Green Star in 2003. He joined Cundall in 2004 and the company has gone on to deliver more Green Star projects than any other Australian consultancy, he says the motivation behind Cundall’s position is clear.
“Climate change, health and wellbeing, biodiversity crisis, pollution of land, waterways and oceans, human slavery in the supply chain are just a few of the key challenges we face. Is there any other alternative to taking action to address these?” asks David.
David adds that it would be hypocritical of Cundall not to follow the advice they give to clients around sustainability, “Lots of companies say they are sustainable but don’t provide evidence to support this. We believe it's important to set yourself stretch targets, report successes and failures transparently and obtain third party verification of performance.”
If Cundall wins the award on December 3, it will add to an impressive list of achievements. Cundall isn’t just a One Planet recognised company, it was the first consultancy in the world to achieve this status in 2013. It was also the first to receive global carbon neutral certification and it was a founding signatory of the World Green Building Council’s Net Zero Carbon Buildings Commitment, but David describes this progress as “reasonable”.
“When we adopted the One Planet framework in 2012, we set ourselves a target to be zero carbon by 2025. In 2020 we became the first global consultancy to be certified Carbon Neutral by the UK’s Carbon Trust, following our Climate Active certification the year before in Australia.
“This is a first step to reducing our carbon footprint and we have much more work to do on this. We treat buying carbon offsets as a self-imposed carbon tax on our business and this also gives us the opportunity to invest in projects that deliver biodiversity and social co-benefits aligned with our One Planet objectives,” says David.
We thank Cundall for driving positive change in the built environment and for their ongoing contribution to Green Star. GBCA recognises and celebrates Cundall’s achievements in this space and regardless of next week’s result, the award is another opportunity for Cundall to rouse our industry into action.
“The awards were an opportunity to share our journey so far and highlight some of the initiatives we’ve implemented. If we can inspire or help others to embrace more sustainable approaches that would be a great outcome irrespective of whether we are fortunate enough to win the award,” says David.