Heathrow’s new Terminal 2 is designed with such environmentally sympathetic ingenuity that it has been used as a model for the world’s first bespoke energy efficiency assessment criteria for airport terminals by the UK’s Building Research Establishment.

T2 has been Heathrow’s largest airside construction project, taking two and a half years to complete and seeing its first flight on 4 June 2014. It was built with sustainability as a guiding principle and its detailed planning, innovation and collaboration with contractors saw T2 completed on time, under budget with no impact on operations.

Terminal 2 is Heathrow’s most sustainable terminal and the first BREEAM (Building Research Establishment’s environmental assessment methodology) certified airport terminal. It has set the standard for environmental efficiency both in new developments at Heathrow and in airport terminals worldwide. This dynamic approach to sustainability, led to collaboration with BRE to create its first bespoke assessment criteria for airport terminals, using T2 as a model.

Examples of construction innovation include: 99% of construction waste being diverted from landfill; LED lighting for site boundaries reducing energy consumption by 50%; design layout reduces aircraft taxi times and CO2 emissions; windows designed to maximise natural light and reduce the need for artificial lighting; water efficiency measures projected to reduce water consumption by 30%.

The new T2 Energy Centre provides 20% renewable power to T2 and is one of the UK’s largest biomass initiatives, improving energy efficiency by 40% more than required through building regulations. Ensuring 75% of the 25,000 tonnes of woodchip required per year is sourced within an 80 kilometre radius has reduced haulage costs and associated CO2 emissions, whilst supporting local jobs and businesses.