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New report outlines Crossrail progress in delivering new sustainable railway

25 November 2013  •  Author: Crossrail

  • Latest Crossrail Sustainability Report highlights construction sector is for the first time adopting particle reduction technology
  • More than three in five businesses supplying Crossrail are based outside London and over half are SMEs
  • Crossrail delivering a sustainable skills legacy, training 3,500 at the new tunnelling academy and supporting the equivalent of 55,000 UK jobs

Crossrail publishes its latest Sustainability Report today, revealing that the project is leading the industry in sustainable construction. Click here to download photos

Covering Crossrail’s environmental, economic, health and safety, skills progress and legacy, the report outlines how Europe’s largest infrastructure project is delivering a sustainable railway.

It reveals, Crossrail has succeeded in getting the UK construction industry to adopt pollution filters on its plant machinery.

Despite accounting for 15 per cent of London’s particle emissions, the construction sector remains the only unregulated major source of emissions.

More than 56 per cent of diesel machinery used on Crossrail’s 45 worksites has been fitted with diesel emission controlling technology including retrofitting older machinery to help significantly cut particle emissions.

Learning from the construction of the Olympic venues, Crossrail included a contractual requirement for contractors to adopt diesel emission controls. Crossrail is exploring how it can increase the uptake; however for some types of worksite equipment cost-effective diesel reduction technology solutions are limited.

Environment Minister, Lord de Mauley said: “Environmental issues affect every single one of us, whether you’re in the bustling city or remote countryside, and Crossrail is a prime example of a huge infrastructure project that will help grow the economy while protecting the environment.”

Crossrail Chief Executive Andrew Wolstenholme said: “Crossrail is delivering a lasting legacy beyond a sustainable railway. We are creating a new generation of construction workers and tunnellers with skills that will set them up for life; we are helping support business across the UK; and we are leading the industry on implementing environmental solutions to make for a greener construction sector.”

The report also outlines that Crossrail is delivering a new generation of tunnellers many of whom are training at the newly established Tunnelling and Underground Construction Academy. Among the 10,000 people working on Crossrail construction sites are 750 people that were previously unemployed. Crossrail and its contractors will deliver a legacy of 400 apprenticeships with more than 270 apprentices having already worked on the project.

The report reveals that the economic benefit of Crossrail is being felt across the UK with more than three in five (62%) businesses winning work being based outside London and over half (58%) are small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs).

In 2012/13, Crossrail’s supply chain supported the equivalent of 13,800 full-time jobs across the UK. Three out of five of those full-time equivalent jobs (8,310) were outside of London. Over the course of the project, it is estimated that Crossrail and its supply chain will create at least 75,000 business opportunities and support the equivalent of 55,000 full time jobs across the country.

Crossrail’s flagship environmental initiative has reached a major milestone with Crossrail announcing today that it has delivered its one millionth tonne of excavated earth to Wallasea Island in Essex to build a new RSPB nature reserve. It is part of one of the biggest movements of earth out of central London since the Edwardian construction of the Piccadilly line.

Crossrail will ship around four million tonnes of earth to Wallasea Island in Essex to create the largest man-made nature reserve of its type in Europe.

The earth is being removed from under London to construct 26 miles of new train tunnels and 10 new stations. The majority of the earth is being transported via rail and ship from central London to Wallasea Island to avoid more than 200,000 additional lorry movements.

Mike Clarke, Chief Executive of the RSPB said: “This partnership represents the innovation and commitment which lies at the heart of the Wallasea Island Wild Coast Project. It is the largest and most significant habitat recreation scheme in the UK, and only a stone’s throw away from the Thames Gateway. It is a wonderful example of how sectors can come together to create a world richer in nature and will show for the first time on a large scale, how it’s possible to ‘future proof’ low-lying coasts against sea level rise caused by climate change.”

Wallasea Island is being transformed from sea wall protected farmland to an inter-tidal marshland similar to its original environment some 400 years ago. It will attract tens of thousands of migratory birds, protect the area from coastal erosion and act as a carbon sink for 450 tonnes of CO2 per year.

Ahead of construction works, some 8,200 protect reptiles and 150 protected water voles have been relocated. The UK water vole population has declined by an estimated 95 per cent in the past fifty years. Crossrail fitted a sample of water voles with radio transmitters to help support research into understanding the mammal’s behaviour.

Please find a link to the embargoed report: http://www.crossrail.co.uk/assets/download/8693

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