The Plant Sector Representative Organisation (PSRO) and the Supply Chain Sustainability School’s (SCSS) Plant Group have worked together to develop a new Eco-operations National Training Delivery Framework. This is in support of the construction plant sector’s initiatives and solutions for the country’s path to Net Zero, with machine usage identified as a contributor to carbon-based emissions. The long-term aim of the sector is to replace all carbon-emitting equipment with zero or low emission-powered versions, however in the short-term, the aim is to reduce as far as practicable, engine-derived emissions through both minimising engine run time and efficient use of that equipment.

This requires an education programme for both owners, operators and users of such equipment and from which eco-operation courses, either in-house with an employer or through externally certified courses from established awarding organisations, are bringing vital learning for this subject. To ensure industry's approach in meeting its obligations, there is a need for an overarching criteria that promotes consistency and standardisation for eco-operations, therefore the PSRO and the SCSS Plant Group worked collaboratively to develop and launch the new training delivery framework. It sets out the parameters for consistent delivery and identifies and provides guidance on areas such as core and optional learning outcomes, delivery content and methodologies, assessment strategies and course durations.

As the learning content can vary for a number of occupations, the framework further identifies individual course content and delivery factors for Plant Operatives, Supervisors, Plant and Site Managers, Planners, Plant Procurers, Maintenance Personnel, etc. The aim is that on completion of a course based on this framework, delegates should have attained a required level of understanding on the principles of reducing machine-based carbon emissions, enabling them to recognise and apply learnt reduction techniques, operational processes and emerging machine technologies with a desired outcome that each delegate takes personal ownership of the need to reduce emissions.

The framework is divided into three parts with part 1 outlining the aims and principles of the framework, part 2 identifying the delivery aspects for the relevant occupations and part 3 specifying the learning outcomes and training specification.

Peter Brown from the PSRO said: “With education being a key part in terms of plant-emission reductions and from a programme jointly developed by CPA members Flannery Plant Hire and L Lynch Plant Hire & Haulage, we’re pleased to have built upon and created the framework in partnership with the SCSS. This will help ensure that future training courses on this topic both cover the relevant industry-derived content and provide a platform for the consistency for the training of plant and site-based occupations though this open-source framework.”

Imogen Player, Senior Sustainability Consultant and Plant Category Group Lead at Action Sustainability and the Supply Chain Sustainability School said: “For the built environment to seriously tackle climate change and reduce emissions, then the impact that good operator behaviour has must be properly realised. The publication of the Eco-operations National Training Delivery Framework is great and I’m excited for it to lead the way forward for best-practice training.”

The framework can be downloaded free of charge from