International engineering federation FIDIC (the International Federation of Consulting Engineers) has relaunched its sustainable development committee as part of a major revamp of its committee structure and international external affairs and stakeholder relations capability.
FIDIC says the relaunched committee will improve the effectiveness of the organisation's work in assessing the impact of the construction industry on sustainability issues and advising the consulting engineering industry on how to develop strategies to maximise its contribution to achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The committee, which includes AECOM sustainable development director Robert Spencer as a representative from the UK, is also set to play a key role in promoting the positive contribution and impact of the industry on sustainable development and combating climate change.
Commenting on the relaunch of the committee, FIDIC chief executive Dr Nelson Ogunshakin said: “The relaunch of our sustainable development committee is part of a detailed and thorough review of FIDIC’s public engagement work where we have sought to ensure that our committees and other representative bodies better reflect geographic diversification and have the right skills set to be more effective in a changing marketplace. Competition was stiff to sit on these revamped committees, with over 350 industry experts from around the world applying to be members.
“The newly relaunched sustainable development committee, in common with a number of other revamped committees we will be announcing over the coming weeks, will enable FIDIC to be more external facing and help us to make a positive impact on and influence in the global infrastructure industry. Going forward, we plan to be more vocal and more visible to meet the challenges our industry faces as it moves out of the Covid crisis and beyond.”
The chair of the committee is Tracey Ryan, managing director of Aurecon – New Zealand. Commenting on her new role, she said: “Environmental sustainability is one of the most important issues facing our planet so I’m really looking forward to starting work as the chair of this vital FIDIC committee and to collaborating and working closely with some amazingly talented people from across the world.
“I believe that engineers play a vital role in helping our governments and communities tackle this complex challenge. A key aim of the committee will be to assess the potential impact of climate change and provide a meaningful forum for consulting engineers to share ideas on how they can enable mitigation, adaptation and resilience to climate change and develop and maintain buildings and infrastructure assets that are truly sustainable in the broadest possible way. The committee will also continue to promote FIDIC’s core principles of quality, integrity and sustainability and work towards better infrastructure while creating positive impact in all the communities where we work.”
The 11-strong committee, which will meet quarterly, will also monitor, advocate and guide best practice in sustainable development across the global engineering and construction industry and advise the FIDIC board on all aspects of sustainable development across the global infrastructure sector. It will also ensure that FIDIC maintains a key focus on the achievement of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals as well as publishing tools and guides for the industry to practice sustainable development.