Al Naboodah chief: Sustainable construction a ‘pressing need’
Senan Abdullah Al Naboodah told this site that sustainable construction cannot be "secondary consideration" in his outline for the Emirati firm's green building strategy
Eco-friendly construction has become an increasingly "pressing need" in the UAE, the managing director of Al Naboodah Construction Group (ANCG) said.
Speaking to Construction Week, Senan Abdullah Al Naboodah warned environmentally-conscious development can no longer be a "secondary consideration".
Citing third-party research, he said building and construction activities consume a huge amount of the world's finite resources – 40% of its energy, 30% of its minerals, and a fifth of its water, according to some estimates.
Al Naboodah said the business was "fully committed to creating practices that are respectful to the environment". He added that the business wanted to partner with organisations to ensure its waste is diverted away from landfill and recycled. But this is just the start of its three-pillar strategy covering 'Responsible Consumption', 'Working as a Family', and 'Unlocking Potential'.
"Growing and developing our region in an efficient, clean, and green way by utilising less resources, generating less waste, reducing pollution, and preserving greenery, waterways, and our natural heritage are the main goals of Al Naboodah Group Enterprises," ANCG's managing director said.
A waste reporting system has been integrated by the company, which has led to a 57% recycling rate for non-hazardous waste.
Another "significant milestone" in the sustainability strategy came after solar panels were installed at the Al Naboodah National Plant & Equipment workshop. Solar panels at the building came online in June 2018 and now feed power directly into the Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (DEWA) power system at Al Naboodah's National Plant in Al Awir.
"The solar panels will make a major contribution to our targets of reducing carbon energy under the 'Responsible Consumption' section of our sustainability roadmap, which aims to reduce consumption by up to 10% of our 2017 baseline," he added.
ANCG's strategy for sustainability is evident in its projects, such as the $103.1m (AED379m) Dubai Forensic Science Lab, one of the largest forensic laboratories in the world.
The three-story facility spans 36,759m². It stores radioactive, organic, and hazardous materials, has a space for testing cars damaged by fire or accidents, and an explosives laboratory. It was mandated by the Dubai government to be a sustainable development, as part of its drive to promote sustainable construction in the emirate.
"Often buildings on this scale have high entry usage requirements, such as electricity, air conditioning load, ventilation, and water consumption," noted Al Naboodah. "But this project will be a benchmark for future developments with an energy-efficient design, water use reduction, sustainable site selection and development, responsible materials section, waste management, and enhanced indoor environmental quality controls".
ANCG was the main contractor for the project and its scope included all the civil works, as well as employment of all subcontractors, which included sustainability consultant AESG and Transgulf for MEP work.