Uncovering the Mysteries of PAS 2080:2023: How to Reduce Carbon in Buildings and Infrastructure!

With carbon emissions from the built environment playing a major part in the UK and other countries emissions, there is a need for authoritative answers on how to manage and reduce the whole life-cycle carbon in our buildings and infrastructure.

The newly, revised PAS 2080:2023 could be that answer…

So, the newly, revised PAS 2080:2023 could be the answer to how the value supply chain can manage and reduce the whole life-cycle carbon in our buildings and infrastructure.

Here is a brief introduction to what is PAS 2080, who is it for, what does it cover & why you might want to use it plus a special link to a free copy of this valuable document later in this article.

What is PAS 2080 – Carbon management in buildings and infrastructure about?
The Publicly Available Specification (or PAS for short) has been developed to respond to the fact that the built environment is responsible for most UK carbon emissions with PAS 2080 being the world’s first specification for decarbonizing buildings and infrastructure systems.

It is a guidance document, which has been revised from its earlier 2016 version to set out how the sector can transition to net zero by 2050 by managing and reducing whole life carbon in buildings and infrastructure.

By using PAS 2080:2023, it has the capability to empower behavioural change, by uniting all organizations through a common framework that will help companies maximize their whole life approach to carbon reduction from the earliest origins of the projects through its end of life.

To assist its use, the PAS contains a range of case studies where the standard has been applied, and provides worked examples to further assist organizations with the application and integration of PAS 2080.

Who is PAS 2080 – Carbon management in buildings and infrastructure for?
It is relevant for a wide range of organisations across the value chain of the built environment, such as:

Asset owners and managers

Architects and designers


Product and material suppliers

Regulators and financiers

It should be noted that PAS 2080 has been sponsored by the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) and the Green Construction Board (GCB) and published by BSI.

What does PAS 2080 – Carbon management in buildings and infrastructure cover?
PAS 2080 specifies requirements for the management of whole life carbon in buildings and infrastructure – in the provision, operation, use and end of life of new projects or programmes of work as well as the management or retrofit of existing assets and networks.

It helps organizations to understand the impact of its assets on the wider network; revealing its interdependencies and encouraging early collaboration; defining roles and responsibilities and integrating carbon-focussed decision making and procurement processes throughout the assets’ lifecycle.

Why should you use PAS 2080 – Carbon management in buildings and infrastructure?
By following the PAS 2080 approach, value chain members across the built environment can work collaboratively towards the common goal of net zero carbon transition and achieve the following outcomes:

Reductions in material, energy and labour costs that reduce whole-life carbon emissions, as well as whole-life capital and operational costs

  • Encourage wider uptake and action on carbon management
  • Ensure that carbon is consistently and transparently quantified at key points and shared along the supply chain aimed at increased efficiency and reduced costs
  • Demonstration of a commitment to carbon reduction, enhancing reputation, supporting staff recruitment and retention
  • Promotion of innovations that achieve lower carbon solutions
  • Provides a common framework that can help the sector adapt to a low carbon future, contributing to the UK’s achievement of its carbon reduction targets, and limiting global warming to 1.5°C, in-line with the Paris Climate Agreement
  • Helps users develop their expertise with carbon management & to increase confidence and trust in their practice
  • And, finally, help organizations grow sustainably.

What’s new about PAS 2080:2023?
If you are familiar with the earlier 2016 edition, then you may be interested in the major changes in PAS 2080:2023, which are:

  • It has an expanded scope to include all the built environment (buildings and infrastructure) with a focus on behaviours and good practice principles intended to complement existing standards/guidance
  • Roles of value chain members have been clarified in relation to their control and influence whole life carbon in the context of a net zero transition and systems-level change
  • Adopts an increased emphasis on whole life carbon with alignment to the Paris Agreement target of a 1.5°C scenario, circular economy principles, and addressing the urgent need to decarbonize systems, networks, and assets while balancing capital carbon investment with operational and user benefit
  • It, now, includes requirements specific to the procurement stage and to aid decision-making in projects and programmes of work
  • Considers other demands and co-benefits while managing carbon, such as climate adaptation and biodiversity net gain
  • Emphasizes the importance of leadership, governance, and collaboration across the value chain and beyond, including guidance for government, regulators, and financiers
  • Brings consistency across the built environment industry to collectively manage whole life carbon and support the net zero transition in harmony with other requirements, such as procurement standards and similar standards

How can I download a PAS 2080:2023?
You can download a free copy of PAS 2080:2023 from the link in the description box below here

If this article has helped to advance your understanding of the PAS 2080 in its newly revised 2023 edition, please leave a comment in the box below, if this article has help you.

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