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Building a sustainable future: Discover how IKO PLC (UK) is championing ESG in construction

By Louis Weir, Sustainability Manager at IKO PLC (UK)

Environmental, social and governance (ESG) in construction and manufacturing is gaining greater focus and more companies are feeling the pressure to adopt sustainable and sympathetic practices. At IKO PLC (UK), we’ve embraced this challenge head-on, supporting a movement towards a more sustainable future for both our business and the industries we serve.

Our latest ESG report is testament to our enduring promise to make positive progress and this blog offers a bitesize overview of our aims and achievements.

Setting the stage for change

With over 140 years’ experience supplying to the built environment, we’ve cemented our position as the market leader in roofing, insulation, waterproofing systems and highway maintenance solutions. But what really sets us apart is our commitment to UK manufacturing and responsible operations.

Our ESG report showcases the milestones we’ve achieved in line with our objectives. From setting science based targets (SBTs) and producing sustainable roofing systems to nurturing new talent and supporting the communities around us, we’ve taken significant steps towards our ESG goals and remain committed to safeguarding a better future for people and the planet.

Here’s just a few examples of what we have achieved in 2023:

• Developed our ESG strategy in alignment with relevant Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
• Conducted a zero packaging trial at our Clay Cross manufacturing site
• Cut our injury and incident rate by almost half
• Slashed the number of days lost to incidents from 110 to just three
• Doubled the number people attending the IKO PLC (UK) management programme
• Significantly lowered water consumption across our sites

Vision rooted in protecting people and the planet

2024 marks a new chapter for IKO PLC (UK). With a clearly-articulated and comprehensive ESG strategy now in place, we have a roadmap to being a more purpose-driven enterprise, where innovation, inclusion and accountability are the cornerstones of our operations.

As every aspect of our operations is already geared towards sustainability and resilience, we are confident that we can achieve our ambitious targets over the coming decade and beyond. What’s more, we know that the more responsible we are, the more value we bring to our partners. But we are also acutely aware that driving sustainable change requires collaboration and transparency across the supply chain.

That’s why we work closely with suppliers and customers to understand and help fulfil their needs and goals. Whether it is supplying green roofing systems or lowering the embodied carbon of our sustainable waterproofing solutions, we are determined to do our part in creating a more sustainable space in which the sector can thrive.

A look at what we aim to achieve by 2030:

• A 42% reduction in Scope 1 and 2 by 2030 from our 2022 baseline
• Certify 70% of IKO PLC (UK) suppliers are aligned with SBTi
• Ensure 50% of all packaging is made up of recycled material
• Make certain that 100% of raw material suppliers have a decarbonisation plan

Looking further into the future, we have also pledged to achieve net-zero with a 90% reduction in Scope 1, 2 and 3 carbon emissions by 2050.

A word from our MD

Speaking about the significance of the inaugural ESG report, Anthony Carlyle, Group Managing Director, IKO PLC (UK), said: “Our progress echoes through this report, showcasing the strides we’ve taken in alignment with our vision. Yet, it also humbly acknowledges the challenges of our journey — from navigating environmental shifts to traversing evolving regulatory landscapes. We see these obstacles not as barriers but catalysts for us to shape a legacy where protecting what matters is fundamental and non-negotiable.

“As pioneers in this industry, we’re determined to forge the path towards a more sustainable future and serve as an example to our partners and peers in the sector.”

A future to be proud of

As we reflect on the past year, we’re proud of how far we’ve come. But we also recognise that our work is far from over. There will be challenges and roadblocks along the way, but we see them as opportunities to set new industry standards.

Importantly, for us, the IKO PLC (UK) ESG strategy is more than about meeting regulatory requirements or appeasing stakeholders but rather building a business that strives to be a benchmark for ESG excellence in construction and manufacturing. We’re excited to support the charge towards lasting, impactful change and invite you to join us on this journey towards a more resilient and responsible future.

Join the ESG journey

Are you an IKO PLC (UK) stakeholder? Has our ESG journey inspired you to take action? Let’s discuss how we can make a difference to the industry, together.

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