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09 Feb 2022

2021 ‘year of achievement’ in sustainable development

MPA_SD_Report_2022.jpgThe latest sustainable development report from the Mineral Products Association (MPA) shows that 2021 was a year of achievement for the industry.

Whether it’s putting into action the UK concrete and cement sector’s Roadmap to Beyond Net Zero or celebrating 50 years of successful quarry restoration and an unrivalled legacy of biodiversity gain, the new document outlines the sector’s commitment and tangible progress towards sustainable development.

The report features key industry achievements over the period, including the MPA-led world-first trials that proved cement can be made with net zero fuel by using hydrogen and biobased fuels. Other sustainability highlights across the MPA’s seven strategic priorities include:


  • Roll-out of ‘Vision Zero’, the industry’s 5-year health and safety plan.
  • Fewer lost-time incidents (LTIs) relating to ‘The Fatal 6’ greatest risks.
  • Joining 50 other organisations for the #RespectTheWater national campaign.


  • Over 450,000 hours of formal training delivered to industry employees.
  • Growth of the MPA Good Neighbour Scheme for communities near quarries.
  • New regional liaison network for marine aggregate operators.


  • Recycled & secondary aggregates among highest in Europe at 28% of total.
  • Almost half of all fuels used in cement-making are now derived from waste.


  • Actioning the ‘UK concrete and cement Roadmap to Beyond Net Zero’.
  • BEIS-funded world-first trials on cement manufacture using net zero fuel.
  • Becoming the largest user of rail freight in terms of ‘tonnes carried’.


  • Leading conservationists joining MPA to mark 50 years of restoration awards.
  • More than 110,000 indigenous trees and 7km hedgerows planted in 2020 alone.
  • 99% of MPA members now have an Environmental Management System in place.


  • 90% of quarries operate under BS EN ISO 9001 (Quality Management).
  • 100% of reported aggregate production certified ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’ under BES6001 (Responsible Sourcing).


  • The mineral products industry contributes c£16 billion to the UK economy.
  • 28,000 employed directly by the industry (and 81,000 in associated sectors).
  • Industry productivity rates are 20% greater than the national average.

Nigel Jackson, CEO of the Mineral Products Association said: Despite supply chain bottlenecks, shortages of some materials and soaring energy prices – not to mention the ongoing pandemic restrictions – I am proud that the mineral products industry has, once again, made excellent progress in sustainable development.

Few industrial sectors have been reporting publicly on sustainable development for as long as we have over the last 12 years. And each year our members continue to deliver improvements across the MPA’s seven strategic priorities as we make progress towards achieving our vision for 2025.

“Not only is this industry supplying essential materials in the most sustainable manner achievable today, but companies are investing in innovations and initiatives to achieve total sustainable development in the future, whether that’s in renewable energy, resource efficiency, nature recovery or countless other areas.

“The mineral products industry is responsible for the biggest flow of materials in the UK economy around 400 million tonnes each year – around half of which is used for Government-backed construction projects, such as infrastructure, housing and renewable energy schemes. The fact that we also operate to standards which place the UK in the top tier globally is worthy of greater recognition and appreciation particularly by Defra who continue to show little or no interest on the contribution we make to nature no matter how hard we try. Not only is this deeply frustrating, it is inexplicable and inexcusable.”


Note to Editors:

The MPA Sustainable Development Report can be found here.

About the Mineral Products Association:

The Mineral Products Association (MPA) is the trade association for the aggregates, asphalt, cement, concrete, dimension stone, lime, mortar and silica sand industries. With the merger of British Precast, and affiliation of the British Association of Reinforcement (BAR), Eurobitume, MPA Northern Ireland, MPA Scotland and the British Calcium Carbonate Federation, it has a growing membership of 520 companies and is the sectoral voice for mineral products. MPA membership is made up of the vast majority of independent SME quarrying companies throughout the UK, as well as the 9 major international and global companies. It covers 100% of UK cement and lime production, 90% of GB aggregates production, 95% of asphalt and over 70% of ready-mixed concrete and precast concrete production. In 2018, the industry supplied £16 billion worth of materials and services to the Economy. It is also the largest supplier to the construction industry, which had annual output valued at £172 billion in 2018. Industry production represents the largest materials flow in the UK economy and is also one of the country’s largest manufacturing sectors.

For media enquiries, contact Elizabeth Clements at:; tel: 07775 894 285.