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PAS 2080

Is this the specification that saves the world?

We know it’s a bold claim.

However, according to the ‘Infrastructure for climate action’ report by the UN Environment Programme, the built environment is responsible for 79% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions.

We cannot state this clearly enough: without immediate course correction on carbon emissions, the world faces catastrophic consequences.

If we are to succeed in limiting global warming to 1.5°C and avoid the worst impacts of climate change, the sector needs to rapidly transform how it delivers and operates buildings and infrastructure.

PAS 2080 is how we do this.

What is PAS 2080?

A management specification that, with its guidance document, provides step-by-step guidance on how to reduce whole-life carbon emissions. It is published by BSI, the international standards and certification body.

The specification explains how to integrate carbon into decision making and procurement from project inception through to end-of-life, enabling the decarbonisation of assets, networks and systems. It makes clear that the greatest opportunity for carbon reduction is in the earliest stages of the project lifecycle when questions can be asked about what to build, how to build and, indeed, whether to build it at all.

PAS 2080 can be used by organisations across the whole built environment value chain, no matter where they are on their carbon reduction journey – whether not yet started or advanced. It sets out the roles and responsibilities of every organisation at every stage in the project lifecycle, providing a common framework and language for decarbonisation.

Register here to receive the latest insights from our carbon management experts as well as invitations to webinars and Q&A clinics on what this means for you and your organisation.

Why get PAS 2080 accreditation?

We recognise that some organisations may not be ready for full accreditation and wish to pursue a more staged approach to building carbon capability in the short term. By investing in improving carbon management capability in a limited number of components, those organisations will see major benefits and pave the way for full accreditation.

This can help you:

  • Operationalise your net-zero roadmap. Many businesses and organisations across the built environment have set out their net-zero strategies and road maps on scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions. The specification sets a clear delivery framework across the whole value chain.
  • Position to win work. Major client organisations are already moving on in the UK. The Department for Transport, for example, has set 2025 as the deadline for its arm's length bodies to be accredited and National Highways has already set that requirement for its entire supply chain.
  • Reassure investors that you are aligned with net zero. Demonstrating your carbon management capability helps attract greater investment opportunities and avoids divestment due to stranded assets.

What can we do for you?

Mott MacDonald has been at the heart of PAS 2080 from the very beginning, co-authoring the specification in 2016 and its update in April 2023.

As the first consultant to be accredited, we know what it takes and support our clients worldwide in improving their carbon management maturity and achieving accreditation for themselves.

We can help you to:

  • Achieve accreditation. We can walk you through the accreditation process or conduct gap analysis to find out what the missing links are through our health check.
  • Measure and monitor carbon. We can implement processes and analyse your data to ensure carbon is baked into your decision making at every level. We can help you develop your net-zero strategy, incentivise your supply chain and upskill teams to improve carbon literacy across your organisation.
  • Design for low carbon, all the time. We will bring our in-depth knowledge to bear on low-carbon design and specification during scheme design and detail design stage phases.
  • Manage your supply chain. Our procurement teams can help you address your supply chain’s carbon footprint and reduce scope three emissions.
  • Analyse whole-life carbon data. Our Moata Carbon Portal is an intuitive digital solution that calculates the carbon emissions of infrastructure at any stage of the project, allowing you to assess and reduce the carbon impact of infrastructure from the earliest possible stages of a project to the end of its life.

Download the specification here.

Download the guidance document here.


Maria Manidaki
Technical principal: carbon net zero, water consultancy division


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