Carbon Reduction Plans to be provided by bidders on major government contracts

The government has introduced PPN 06/21, 'Taking account of Carbon Reduction Plans in the procurement of major government projects', to align with and support the government's aim of achieving net zero by 2050.

PPN 06/21 creates an obligation for bidders to provide a Carbon Reduction Plan ('CRP') and will apply to the procurement of goods, services or works with an anticipated contract value of over £5m per year (excluding VAT) advertised on or after 30 September 2021, unless 'it would not be related or proportionate to the contract.' However, the PPN notes that 'Environmental considerations and carbon reduction will be a consideration in most, if not all, contracts and therefore it is expected that in the majority of cases, the application of this PPN will be relevant.'

Bidders will have to complete the template CRP included with the PPN, which includes:

  • confirmation of their commitment to achieving net zero in the UK by 2050;
  • current and baseline Scope 1 and 2 emissions and specified Scope 3 emissions;
  • emissions reporting for greenhouse gases covered by the Kyoto Protocol;
  • details of existing environment management measures and those that would be applied when performing the contract and that will support the achievement of net zero by 2050.

The CRP should be published on the bidders' website and updated at least annually.

As well as the PPN, the government has published guidance on adopting and applying PPN 06/21 as part of the procurement selection criteria, technical standards for completing the CRP and frequently asked questions on PPN 06/21.

To support our clients in their journey towards net zero, Stuart Pemble and I recently presented ‘Building Towards Net Zero: what is it and how do we get there?’ with Professor Sean Smith (Director, Centre for Future Infrastructure, University of Edinburgh). A recording of the webinar can be found here.

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