Myths about Careers in Sustainability

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Within the Construction Industry, workers must help to build a world that will improve the lives of future generations and in doing so, use the most eco-friendly methods available. Working sustainably means meeting the demands of the expanding population, as well as nurturing the environment for the long run.

Sustainable building or “Green building” comes with a whole host of benefits. The materials tend to last longer, require fewer resources to develop and are usually more aesthetically pleasing. It improves indoor air quality, health and the productivity of the occupants. What’s more, the buildings become cheaper to run (which is essential in the current cost of living crisis) and the resale values can in some cases be greater than those that are conventionally built.

It’s no surprise that the focus on sustainability and energy efficiency within new building projects is sky high. But what happens to the buildings that have already been built? Shouldn’t they, and their occupants benefit from modern, sustainable, environmentally friendly building techniques too? Of course they should! That’s where “retrofitting” comes in.

Domestic Retrofitting is the act of future-proofing homes or properties by fitting new systems that encourage high energy efficiency and low energy consumption to buildings previously built without them. This can range from small activities like installing energy-efficient LED lights, right through to implementing state of the art heating systems, ventilation and wall insulation. It’s the new way to go when it comes to improving the world around us, making it an excellent career choice to consider. To help you get clued up, this week’s blog is focussed on busting some big sustainability myths!

Myth 1 – Sustainability is boring

We know, we know. Sustainability… again. We get it, it’s boring, a little preachy, and no one really has the time or the money for it. Plus, it’s so, so hard to change your habits.

The truth is, all of the above is a COMPLETE misconception. Sustainability isn’t preachy, it’s not boring, it’s not time consuming, nor is it expensive. Sustainability is badass – we’re saving the world.

Granted, the history of sustainability hasn’t helped prevent the perpetuation of this misconception. For over the last decade we’ve been bombarded with images of the world in crisis, for which we, at home on our sofas, feel like we are helpless. We’ve been spoken at with language we don’t understand, and have been deafened by facts and figures that really, quite simply, aren’t relatable. In the past, the sustainability crisis has been easy to ignore, but now, sustainability is a key topic for discussion, and we need to change the way we talk about it.

So say goodbye to the boring, incomprehensible sustainability, and say hello to the fun, inspiring and thought provoking upgrade – sustainability 2.0.

Sustainability is a really exciting opportunity for all involved. Within the built environment, Construction activities contribute to 10% of the UK’s annual carbon emissions. On a global scale, it contributes to 39%! That’s HUGE! So we HAVE to do something about it. By switching up how Construction “do things” now, you could be at the forefront of great change – who wouldn’t want to say: “I did that!”

Myth 2: Sustainability & “Net Zero” will be forgotten about soon… “It’s just a fad!”

Far from it. Sustainability and Net Zero might seem like buzzwords but they are “trends” which are firmly here to stay. And the concept runs far deeper than talk. Nowadays people are re-evaluating their own attitudes and behaviours, taking steps to reduce their environmental impact, and even switching jobs to build more meaningful careers in what has fast become a hugely relevant field.

As a result organisations are restructuring their businesses, hiring specialist talent and remodelling senior leadership teams to give sustainability directors greater influence by virtue of a seat at the top levels of decision making. They’re making permanent changes for the future suggesting that this is only the beginning. Future employers will look to you for the knowledge and expertise on sustainable methods because it’s a skill set they currently lack within their existing workforce, so it pays (incredibly well) to get ahead of the game now.

Myth 3 – Retrofit is a ‘fit and forget’, once-only project

Wrong! Retrofitting is in fact a continual process and we’re only really at the beginning of the journey. Like anything, buildings will need regular repair and maintenance throughout their lifespan to ensure that they remain up to date and fit for purpose. With new technology and advancements being released all the time, it is expected that methods will only get better and become more streamlined, so really, our work will never stop.

There are so many opportunities that a career in sustainability can provide. To find out more, why not get in touch. We’ve got a range of FREE Traineeships set to launch this summer, designed specifically around Construction Green Skills and Retrofit. So to future-proof your career as well as the world around you, please contact us today!

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