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News Release

JLL partners with Business in the Community to support industry adoption of circular economy 


JLL recently attended a roundtable with HRH The Prince of Wales and UK Secretary of State for the Environment, Rt Hon Michael Gove MP to discuss the pressing issue of how we collect and use waste to create maximum value for business and society. Hosted by Business in the Community, the session brought together business leaders from across the UK, with JLL specifically advising on the role of real estate in the UK’s ongoing transition to a low carbon and circular economy.

With the real estate and construction sector responsible for 64% of all waste generated in the UK, creating a more efficient approach to eliminate waste and sustain growth has never been more pertinent. JLL is currently one of just a few real estate companies in the UK to set a specific circular economy goal.

Following the roundtable, Andrew Renshaw, UK Board Sustainability Sponsor, commented: “It was inspirational to hear from the Prince of Wales and to be alongside other business leaders driving the transition to a circular economy. Off the back of Blue Planet II, you can see that momentum is really building publicly and in the private sector to ensure all materials have a value at the end of their life.”

Sophie Walker, Head of Sustainability in the UK at JLL, said: “We are delighted to be working with Business in the Community to help catalyse change within the real estate industry. As an international business operating in 80 countries worldwide, and currently managing 400 million square metres of buildings on behalf of our clients, we believe that JLL has an important role to play in helping to integrate a circular economy into the built environment community. 

“This partnership underpins JLL’s sustainability strategy, Building a Better Tomorrow. A circular approach has the potential to help the real estate sector in a number of ways, including lower construction and refurbishment costs, lower waste management fees, greater resilience against volatile commodity prices, better building performance and increased innovation across the entire supply chain.” 

Last year, JLL hosted an audience of 60 occupiers at its London headquarters in Warwick Street at the national launch event for Business in the Community’s “Circular Office” campaign. JLL has since joined the Circular Economy Taskforce and is contributing to both the scale-up of the “Circular Office” campaign and to its government engagement. This includes providing a case study for an upcoming white paper from the charity, entitled: “Resource Productivity and the Circular Economy: the opportunities for the UK economy”. The launch of the paper will take place in May 2018 and will be attended by Michael Gove, as well as JLL’s EMEA CEO, Guy Grainger.

In the last 12 months, JLL has also been raising awareness of the circular economy through property forums such as the British Property Federation and the UK Green Building Council and collaborating with clients on innovative projects. A project in Bristol saw client Grant Thornton reuse furniture during an office move and donate £47,000 of equipment to local charities, saving the company significant landfill costs. For its client, The Crown Estate – who aim to remove all waste from their business by 2030 – JLL delivered the refurbishment of 200m2 office space in Regent Street with a full suite of remanufactured and refurbished furniture and equipment including kitchen worktops made from 100% recycled glass. 

In its own workplaces, JLL is testing circular innovations and cost savings, ranging from deploying Vegware cups and cutlery to driving high recycling rates. It is also engaging with its facilities management teams and leading suppliers to develop an action plan for circular office pilots in JLL UK workplaces during 2018. A circular economy approach will also be applied to JLL’s new London hub, following relocation of its three London offices to one single space in 2022.