Milbank Concrete Products Celebrates UK’s First Delivery On 100% Renewable Fuel

Milbank Concrete Products Deliver UK’s First Precast Concrete Hollowcore Floor Installation On 100% Renewable Fuel, Reducing CO2 Emissions by Over 90%

Milbank Concrete Products, a leading precast concrete company based in Essex, is proud to announce a ground-breaking achievement in sustainable construction. The company has successfully completed the UK’s first-ever delivery and installation of precast concrete hollowcore floors using 100% renewable Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO) second generation biofuel.

The installation of over 190m2 of hollowcore flooring and 3 flights of precast stairs, on behalf of Tilia Homes located within their Sovereign Gate development in Thetford, marks the UK’s first-ever precast concrete installation using 100% HVO fuel throughout the entire process, from delivery to installation.

The delivery lorry (in partnership with Woodland Logistics), the mobile crane (in partnership with Cadman Cranes), and the site team installation van all ran on HVO fuel, a renewable fuel alternative to regular diesel. This innovative approach reduces the project’s installation carbon emissions by over 90% and sets a new standard for environmentally responsible construction practices.

Hollowcore floors are a popular choice for housebuilders across the country. Prefabricated concrete slabs known for their strength, durability, and lightweight design are lowered into position via a crane, usually found seated on masonry walls or steel frames. Manufactured with strategically placed voids, these slabs offer excellent fire resistance, sound insulation, and thermal performance. They are a popular choice for and large residential projects, multi-story buildings and commercial spaces.

Ben Sharp, Tilia Home’s Senior Site Manager at the Sovereign Gate project, said – “Tilia Homes is committed to preventing environmental harm. This installation marks a pivotal moment within the construction industry, and we are delighted to be able to work with Milbank whose values align so closely with ours. This installation truly demonstrated the value of responsible construction and contributed towards an important reduction in our emissions at this project.”

And the savings weren’t just limited to site works. Milbank Concrete Products has made significant investments at its manufacturing facility in Essex with an aim of lowering its scope 1 & 2 emissions, with solar panels powering 50% of factory operations, fully electric forklift trucks, and a carbon neutral wood pellet boiler to cure its concrete beds. Since 2018, the business has successfully reduced its CO2 emissions by over 55%, with plans for net-zero by 2030, 20 years ahead of government targets.

Lee Cowen Managing Director Headshot

Lee Cowen, Managing Director of Milbank Concrete Products, said

Our aim is to be the most sustainable supplier of precast concrete products. While we have achieved significant milestones in recent years, our commitment to sustainability remains unwavering, and I am beyond proud to be part of such a passionate team that’s making all of this possible. We understand the impact our industry has on the environment and we’re leaving no stone unturned in making changes for the better. This is the first of many installations delivered and installed with 100% renewable biofuel, and I look forward to supporting new and existing customers with many more.”

HVO fuel is a form of renewable diesel created from recycled sustainable vegetable oils. Unlike traditional diesel fuel derived from crude oil, HVO fuel offers significantly reduced greenhouse gas emissions. In fact, studies show HVO can achieve greenhouse gas reductions of over 90% compared to standard diesel, while producing little to no smoke.

There are several compelling reasons to choose HVO fuel over traditional diesel: 

  • Reduced Carbon Footprint: HVO fuel offers substantial reductions in CO2 emissions, contributing to a greener construction process.
  • Sustainable Source: Derived from plant-based materials, HVO is a renewable resource unlike the finite reserves of crude oil.
  • Performance: HVO fuel performs similarly to traditional diesel in terms of power and efficiency, allowing for seamless integration into existing construction equipment.
  • Air Quality: Unlike regular diesel, HVO fuel burns almost smoke/fumeless. This provides a significant improvement for machinery operators on site.

The construction industry is a significant contributor to global greenhouse gas emissions. By adopting innovative solutions like 100% HVO fuel installations, Milbank Concrete Products is demonstrating a strong commitment to environmental stewardship. This approach paves the way for a more sustainable future in construction, minimising environmental impact while delivering high-quality precast concrete solutions for its customers.