Heathrow Cargo Tunnels Project Adopts Full Electrification, Eliminating Red Diesel On-Site

Keltbray, the UK’s leading specialist construction engineering and infrastructure services provider, has set a remarkable precedent by achieving 100% electrification of its Heathrow Cargo Tunnels project. This achievement not only signifies a transformation in the way projects are executed but also signals a triumphant step towards a cleaner, more efficient future.


Empowering Progress: Red Diesel Eliminated through Complete Electrification

Picture a construction site teeming with activity, all powered solely by batteries. Keltbray’s pioneering electrification strategy ensured that every aspect of the Heathrow Cargo Tunnels project, including backup power, relied solely on battery technology, rendering diesel obsolete on-site.

The project at Heathrow, delivered by Keltbray’s Environmental Services team, involved asbestos residue removal and concrete repairs, all carried out using battery and electric equipment. The unique and less accessible project location necessitated the use of portable battery technology for successful completion.


Harvesting Energy for a Greener Future: The Power of Battery-Driven Transformation

Keltbray’s dedication to battery-powered construction ushers in a new era of ingenuity and sustainability, highlighted by:

  • Increased Efficiency: Battery-driven operations elevated the efficiency of Keltbray’s project, ensuring precise power allocation and improved accessibility
  • Emission Reduction: The absence of diesel emissions results in cleaner and fresher air, showcasing Keltbray’s commitment to addressing climate change
  • Improved Air Quality: Local air quality receives a much-needed enhancement, promoting a healthier environment for stakeholders
  • Reduced Noise and Vibrations: Noise pollution and vibrations are significantly curtailed, reducing occupational health concerns
  • Triumph Over Fuel Costs: Adoption of these practices leads to substantial fuel cost reduction


Innovative Equipment: Battery-Powered Tools That Define Success

At the core of the Heathrow project’s electrification lies a strategic selection of battery-powered equipment, meticulously chosen for optimal impact:

  • Mobilising Excellence: Employing two high-top panel electric vans, two 9-seater electric minibuses, and one small electric van
  • Pioneering Innovation: Utilising two HUSSh pod battery units, nine small battery packs, and an electric tower light
  • Ensuring Reliability: A backup HVO generator served as a safeguard, although its intervention remained unnecessary.

These self-contained battery units, including battery packs, HUSSh pods, and yellow battery packs from rite power, heralded a new era of carbon savings. The two HUSSh pods alone saved a total of 22,862 kgCO2e with an average runtime of 2,132 hours. These emissions are equivalent to the energy needed to power 2.9 homes for a year. These innovative pods outperformed traditional red diesel generators and also resulted in cost savings of £1,911.04.


Transforming the Industry: Electrification as a Standard Practice

Keltbray’s visionary approach to site electrification extends throughout the organization. The establishment of our utilities team marked a commitment to emission reduction and achieving net-zero, all while enhancing project efficiencies.

Our dedicated team orchestrated seamless connection and disconnection of electricity, gas, and water supplies, utilising cutting-edge remote monitoring technology for optimal decision-making.

Recognizing the pivotal role of mains power in decarbonisation, Keltbray has replaced fuel generators with Temporary Building Supply (TBS) on several major London construction sites. This bold move has yielded remarkable results:

  • Environmental Triumph: An astounding 980,000 litres of diesel bypassed, resulting in a 2466 tCO2e reduction in carbon emissions – an impressive 10% cut in Scope 1 emissions
  • Economic Victory: A notable £700,000 saved, underscoring the profitability potential of sustainable practices

When electricity supply is unavailable and generators become necessary, Keltbray’s utilities team devise efficient solutions, ranging from on-demand generators to hybrid systems that incorporate battery technology for baseloads, with generators reserved for peak demands.


Revealing Astonishing Outcomes: Aggreko’s Battery Technologies in Action

Following the adoption of Aggreko’s battery technologies, a comprehensive review of data from 12 Keltbray projects reveals astounding results:

  • Emission Reduction: Over 200 tonnes of carbon eliminated annually, showcasing Keltbray’s strong environmental commitment
  • Fuel Conservation: A remarkable 75,000 litres of fuel saved
  • Cost Savings: Fuel savings translate to over £100,000 in tangible cost benefits


Championing Progress: A Determined Move Towards Sustainable Construction

Keltbray’s electrification journey symbolises our environmental transformation in our journey to Net-Zero. From construction sites to sustainability milestones, our organisation stands ready to drive change towards a future that is brighter, greener, and increasingly more sustainable.

Our efforts in site electrification have recently been acknowledged by the Construction Leadership Council (CLC), highlighted in their Co2nstruct Zero 6th Quarterly Framework report.

Find the full framework here.

For a comprehensive overview of Keltbray’s decarbonisation efforts, explore our carbon reduction plan.

Media Enquiries

Philip Pashley, Group Proposals and Communications Director


Tel: 020 7643 1000

Email: [email protected]


Notes for Editors

About Keltbray

Keltbray is a leading UK specialist construction engineering and infrastructure solutions business, offering a uniquely integrated delivery capability spanning key phases of the client value chain – design management, civil engineering, geotechnical, construction waste management, demolition and decommissioning, piling and reinforced concrete structures, remediation, rail infrastructure, power distribution, transmission and substations, and renewable energy services.

The company was founded in 1976 and is privately owned, directly employs over 2,000 people, and is a key delivery partner to prestigious public and private sector customers, contributing to the development and maintenance of Britain’s rapidly changing economic and social infrastructure.

Keltbray provides certainty of delivery to meet the exacting needs of diverse and complex projects in complex, safety-critical markets. Its professionally accredited teams take pride in delivering safely and sustainably to specification, on time, to budget, and with care for the environment and our communities.