As one of the world’s largest construction companies, Skanska has taken a leadership role in how the industry looks at sustainability. In any given year, Skanska has 50,000 employees and 200,000 subcontractors carrying out some 10,000 projects for customers in their markets.
We had the opportunity to speak with Courtney Lorenz, Director of Environmental Management Skanska USA Building, about how Skanska is able to implement sustainability initiatives in their projects.
“Skanska has found that there are two key aspects of our sustainability initiatives: metrics and accountability,” said Lorenz. “Without metrics and accountability, our initiatives are nothing more than marketing. All levels of management here at Skanska take our sustainability initiatives as serious as any other part of our business.”
Lorenz explained that Skanska views their sustainability initiatives as an onion. The “core” aspects Skanska can control, the second layer, in Skanska’s case: subcontractors, they can influence, and the outer layers are clients that Skanska believes they have a responsibility to educate.
Education is a crucial aspect in Skanska’s business model because 85 percent of what they do is carried out by others – over 90,000 suppliers across their markets to be more precise.
Skanska decided that one of the best places to showcase their sustainability efforts would be at their flagship office. Skanska provides a detailed case study of how they were able to retrofit their New York City headquarters in the Empire State Building and first commercial building in Scandinavia to achieve LEED Platinum precertification.
As readers of this blog know, I like to ask folks to share their favorite books. Lorenz mentioned these four: Silent Sprint by Rachael Carlson , Collapse by Jared Diamond, 1984 by George Orwell, and Mutant Message Down Under by Marlo Morgan.
We look forward to hearing more about Skanska’s sustainability initiatives as the company continues to be a leader in the space. For more information on Skanska’s Sustainability efforts, please check out their website.
At PK Metals, we take pride in our commitment to sustainability, and enjoy sharing the stories of Skanska and other companies’ sustainability efforts. We have more than 80 employees spread over our 20-acre facility on Long Island, N.Y., working to recycle electronics, metal, and plastic. PK Metals is a R2/RIOS certified electronics recycler, and our subsidiary, e-Green Recycling Management LLC, is R2-, 14001-, and NAID-certified.