Environmental Impact

Part of bringing about positive change in the built environment and the wider world involves reducing the negative impact of human activity on the environment. As BRE encourages and helps others to improve their environmental performance, we must lead by example if we are to maintain the trust and confidence of our customers.

We work to ensure that our operations and activities are managed in an energy, resource, and emission-efficient manner, in order to minimise our ecological footprint.


  • Continually improve our environmental performance.
  • Contribute to economic, environmental and social sustainability in both the short and long term.
  • Manage our activities to minimise the risk of pollution and contamination.
  • Comply with all relevant legislation.


  • Maintaining an environmental management system, certified to a globally recognised environmental management standard.
  • Setting and meeting objectives and targets to minimise the negative environmental impacts and maximise the positive environmental impacts of our operations.
  • Training our employees to achieve and maintain high standards of environmental performance.
  • Using products and processes to assist in reducing the environmental life cycle impacts of our activities and those of our customers and supply chain.
  • Communicating openly and consulting with stakeholders on environmental issues.

Environmental Management System

Maintaining a rigorous environmental management system helps BRE to exercise active control over the impact of our activities on the environment. More specifically, our framework for environmental management helps us to:

  • improve our environmental performance,
  • reduce operating costs,
  • maintain our reputation as a world-leading building science centre, and
  • ensure compliance with relevant environmental laws, regulations and internationally recognised standards.

For example:

Q:. You are conducting an experiment in one of BRE’s laboratories which involves using certain chemicals. There is a small spill but it is a low-hazard hydrocarbon material and you are able to contain it quickly, thereby avoiding any major damage.

do you have to report it?

A:  YES. You should report any sort of spill that happens on BRE’s premises, no matter how small, irrespective of whether you are directly involved in the spill or just happen to see it. Prompt reporting allows for appropriate remediation and ensures that environmental damage is avoided or kept to a minimum.