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Northstone’s Sustainable Development Goals: Responsible Consumption and Production

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October 13, 2021

At Northstone, we are committed to ensuring that sustainability underpins everything we do. For some housebuilders this means making the home more eco-friendly, and although we do that, our approach goes far beyond just the home. For us sustainability means everything from looking at our environment and development policies, to how we choose and use our land, to appropriately embedding ourselves in and supporting our local economies. It’s what makes us positively different.

We hold ourselves accountable by sticking to our four Sustainable Development Goals:

  1. Responsible consumption and production
  2. Decent work and economic growth
  3. Sustainable cities and communities
  4. Life on land

Here, we’ll explore the first of these goals: responsible construction and production. At Northstone, sustainability is built into our homes, whether that’s ensuring we use natural resources, reducing waste wherever possible or ensuring we have sustainable business practices.

One way we are doing this is through our innovative Waste Capture Scheme. At our Silkash development, we are trialling a new method of sustainability evaluation – this involves a skip being placed adjacent to a plot prior to starting build work. We then collect and record every piece of waste – no matter how small – from the plot. In doing so, we’ll be able to evaluate which are our most significant waste streams and consider efforts to minimise these on future plots. This scheme will have a huge impact on our footprint, and we are aiming to reduce our waste by 5% per year through the findings.

But it doesn’t stop at construction. We’re also trialling cutting-edge technologies at Silkash to gain an understanding of how to achieve a net-zero carbon home within the next year.

One example is an Air Source Heat Pump being installed as a trial in a plot due to be completed by Christmas 2021.

Air Source Heat Pumps use clever technology to heat your home, produce renewable energy and save money on your energy bills. They do this by:

  1. Absorbing the heat from the air outside into a liquid refrigerant
  2. The refrigerant warms up and changes into a gas
  3. The gas moves into a compressor which increases the pressure and the heat
  4. The compressed hot gas moves into a heat exchanger where it transfers the heat into water or air
  5. This hot air and water then are then used to heat your home and give you hot water, before the refrigerant turns back into a cool liquid to be used again.

This incredible technology eliminates the need for a gas boiler and will help offset the carbon produced in the construction of the home.

These are just a couple of the innovative solutions we have at Northstone to ensure that our homes and communities are built in as sustainable a way as possible, and we are constantly exploring new methods to improve even further. We believe that homes should add to their environment, not take away from it, ensuring that you can continue to enjoy your local area, and the planet, in the years to come.