Our biggest differentiator is the ability to offer decarbonization advisory services as part of a wider engineering service offering. We have pan-sector expertise covering all stages of the project lifecycle, through design, construction, operation and demolition. We can connect and embed those decarbonization strategies and solutions from beginning to end, and as the green transition gathers pace, increasingly every project will have some level of decarbonization outcome associated with it.
WSP has advised many clients on their high level decarbonization plans in recent years; many of them are now in the implementation phase. They particularly value the fact that, having worked with them at the strategic design phase, we are able deploy our wider engineering capability to deliver and manage those projects for them.
We’re going to see increasing demand for that holistic offering, as firms start acting on their commitments around decarbonization in the next decades.
What do you see as the biggest challenge in this area over the next five years?
Time is running out, and as a society, we are simply not moving fast enough. The scale of the work required to unpick the entrenched carbon-heavy practices of the past century, and the capital required to fund those decarbonization projects, is going to put a huge strain on the global economy in the coming years. Hampering the delivery will be an industry-wide shortage of expertise capacity. We must take steps now to ensure that we seed, nurture and retain the brightest minds to meet the exponential growth in demand for environmental and sustainability services, if we are to hit our net zero targets.
However, while deep expertise in the hands of core teams is going to be critical to solving the most challenging and complex problems, at the same time we need to mainstream this knowledge. We have to ensure that our workforce has a level of greenhouse gas literacy, so that we all understand and are able to support those decarbonization outcomes, regardless of our specific role. An unparalleled program of training and knowledge development is necessary so that each one of us can take responsibility for that carbon budget.