APHC's Major Contractors Group met recently at the Houses of Parliament, attracting a high-calibre list of major plumbing and mechanical contractors. They discussed in detail the practicalities of turning the Governments ambitious environmental aims into reality, concluding that without some radical changes, the targets set may be unreachable. The Group concluded that reaching these targets would need a unified approach not only from the industry but also from Government departments, rather than the fragmented approach currently being seen.The most serious danger which alone would lead to failure is the lack of a clear plan joining the design, manufacture, installation, commissioning and maintenance of systems together.
With the plumbing and mechanical sector at the front line of delivering this critical Government policy, the Group suggested to APHC that it needs to help bring together all elements of the sector to produce a road map for Government. David Bilclough, Chairman, John N Dunn Group Ltd, was at the meeting. He commented:"What our industry really needs to support the 2016 Zero Carbon initiative is greater clarity on how housebuilders intend to meet their targets. Our industry has made significant strides in recent years, being at the forefront of installing low carbon technologies such as Solar Hot Water Systems and Heat Pumps.
However, we need a greater understanding from the wider construction industry on how they intend to achieve the target, and what role plumbing and heating will play in Zero Carbon homes. Only through open dialogue and a clear road-map will the industry be able to make the necessary preparations to retrain plumbing & heating engineers in the relevant products, methods and processes."The Major Contractors Group came together under the guidance of Chairman Lord O'Neill of Clackmannan. They also discussed other important industry subjects including Licence to Practise, the Construction Act, Project Bank Accounts, promulgations and pre-qualification schemes. Although organised by APHC, the group is open to both APHC members and non-members.
Companies represented at the recent meeting included John N Dunn Group Ltd, SPIE Mathew Hall and JH Shouksmith & Sons Ltd.Speaking following the meeting, Kevin McAllister from CHN Group, part of E.ON, said:"I was impressed with the quality of both the discussion and the people who were there. We had an excellent debate on a range of issues. We need to take every opportunity possible to get our voice heard on a range of subjects in the corridors of power but most specifically on zero carbon homes; the Government needs to know that the plumbing and mechanical industry is ready and waiting to deliver.
We just need clear and concise legislation aiding integrated teams and recognising the already well trained and established contractors who can deliver."APHC is calling for major contractors in the industry to work together to ensure their lobbying efforts are effective. Contact APHC's Patrick Murray on 0121 711 5034 if you would like to know more or to join the group. You must be a main contractor with over 250 employees to join.