Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Sustainability - And You

What's your view?

What does sustainability mean to you? Let us know at Or email

This survey is being produced in association with Halcrow. See the back page for more information on the company, or visit

Helen Samuels
Water and power
Working with two of the most sustainability-aware clients in the UK has given water business regional operations manager Helen Samuels a keen awareness of the standards that can be attained. "We do a lot of work for the Environment Agency and the South West Regional Development Agency (SWRDA)," she explains.

"They are both trailblazers in sustainability, and that in turn influences us and gives us knowledge that we can take to other clients – particularly in the private sector, where there is a perception that sustainability means spending more money."

Samuels is project director for SWRDA's ambitious wave energy hub off the coast of Cornwall. Wave Hub gained planning approval two months ago, and earlier this month won the sustainability award at the Institution of Engineering & Technology's annual innovation awards.

"What we've learned from clients like that has enabled us to consider sustainability very early – always having it on our minds, not coming along as some sort of add-on at a later stage," she says. "It's become a habit for us now, and I genuinely believe that we're able to influence those clients for whom sustainability is not one of their core values, and demonstrate that it doesn't automatically mean spending more money."

Knowledge transfer underpins Samuels' understanding of what sustainability means. "It's important that we pick out the parts of the world where there is excellence in different areas. We can learn a lot from other parts of the world," she says.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Please note comments made online may also be published in the print edition of New Civil Engineer. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.