Laing O’Rourke replaces red diesel with vegetable oil on sites

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Laing O’Rourke moving forward by replacing red diesel with hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) in all its site plant before the end of March.

The move too HVO will be a ‘transition fuel’ as the large contractor works towards a fleet that is entirely made up of electric and hydrogen powered equipment to meet its own targets of reducing carbon emisions.

Red diesel will be banned in construction plant from April on all Laing O’Rourke sites with the option to use more expensive white diesel or alternative fuels.

Select Plant Hire and Explore Plant which are part of O’Rourke’s divisions, have been testing HVO over the last six months.

The move to these lower emissions fuels can reduce carbon by up to 90% with the use of diesel in plant equipment is the largest single source of the company’s direct emissions, comprising 39% of the total.

Managing Director of Select Plant Hire Alex Warrington, commented saying that: “This is a positive step forward and will result in a substantial reduction in the largest
single source of our direct emissions.

“While it would be more straightforward to switch to white diesel, we believe it’s important we take the necessary actions to meet our 2030 operational net zero deadline.

“Our vision is to have all our plant powered by electricity or hydrogen by 2030.

“This is not possible right now, but from 2025 we expect to see a marked increase in the availability of electric and hydrogen plant equipment from manufacturers, and from then we will start to replace the HVO powered plant in our fleet.”

Laing O’Rourke is also committed to ensure that any third-party plant equipment used on its project sites uses HVO rather than diesel.