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Showcasing Diversity: How to Demonstrate Sustainable Engineering Practices in Your Professional Registration Application


In 1987, the United Nations Brundtland Commission defined sustainability as “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” However, with the increasing threat of climate change, we will need to make significant efforts to ensure development today does not negatively impact future generations. Therefore, the Engineering Council requires professional engineers and technicians to carry out their work in a way that contributes to sustainable development, as outlined in the UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence (UK-SPEC). 

Below are impactful ways that professional engineers can demonstrate their understanding and application of sustainability, and seamlessly integrate it into their journey towards becoming a Chartered Engineer.

1.   Knowledge is Power:

Start by learning about the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) on the United Nations and learn of ways you can apply the SDG’s to your job. If your organisation has a Sustainability and ESG Report, read and understand how this applies to your job, and what is expected of you.

2.      Stay informed:

Continuous learning is key, so attend company and/or industry-specific courses, webinars, and workshops focused on sustainability including climate change impact, circular economy, ESG, and renewable energy technologies.


3.      Turn theory into Action: 

Transform theory into practical action by applying the knowledge gained from webinars, courses and conferences. For example, you could introduce initiatives such as recycling, re-purposing and re-using of workplace wastes, or you and your colleagues can volunteer to undertake a sustainability project in your local community.


4. Designing for Sustainability: 

Consider the impact of your engineering decisions on the environment. Design facilities that embrace the principles of recycle, re-use and re-purpose. Identify and implement design measures for using less water and other natural resources in your operations. Lead a sustainability workshop prior to starting your design project and refine your design in line with findings from the workshop.


5. Lead Carbon Emissions Reporting

Where possible, you can contribute to writing your organisation’s Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions report. This report would typically track the company’s emissions across its facilities, and establish goals and targets to reduce emissions.


6. Think Circular: 

Embrace the circular economy model to reduce waste and environmental impact. Source and collaborate with recycling companies to integrate sustainable practices within your organization's operations where applicable. Become a driving force for positive change by influencing the choices your organization makes.


7. Influence Procurement Practices: 

Develop sustainability and ESG criteria for selecting suppliers, contractors, and consultants. Be a driving force for ethical and responsible procurement, and forge responsible partnerships.


8. Lead or Coordinating Sustainability & ESG Policy and Plan: 

Showcase your commitment to transparency and accountability by authoring or contributing ideas to your organization's sustainability & ESG policy and plan.



Yes, we understand that not all tips will be applicable to one person but by weaving these strategies into your engineering profession as well as your personal life, you not only will be ensuring that today’s development does not negatively impact future generations but will also be demonstrating your understanding and application of sustainability in your profession, and your application to become a chartered engineer.

Written by Nike Amiaka

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