Regulation and Standards for Sustainable Construction


The Construction Products Association have provided a useful Guidance Note on the Construction Products Regulation, (CPR), available to download here.  The CPR builds on the Construction Products Directive, and explicitly contains reference to the assessment of greenhouse gases  and natural resources use over the life cycle of buildings (construction works).

For example, Basic Requirement for Construction Works 3 covering Hygiene, Health and Environment states,

“The construction works must be designed and built in such a way that they will, throughout their life cycle, not be a threat to the hygiene or health and safety of their workers, occupants or neighbours, nor have an exceedingly high impact, over their entire life cycle, on the environmental quality or on the climate, during their construction, use and demolition, in particular as a result of any of the following: …

…b) the emissions of dangerous substances, VOC, greenhouse gases or dangerous particles into indoor or outdoor air; …

and Basic Requirement for Construction Works 7 covering sustainable use of natural resources states,
“The construction works must be designed, built and demolished in such as way that the use of natural resources is sustainable and ensure the following:
  • recyclability of the construction works, their materials and parts after demolition
  • durability of the construction works
  • use of environmentally compatible raw and secondary material in the construction works.”

The CPR also states  “For the assessment of the sustainable use of resources and of the impact of construction works on the environment Environmental Product Declarations should be used when available”.  As the CEN/TC 350 standards, and in particular EN 15804, should be used as the basis of any EPD and building-level assessment used in national or European Regulation, this is highly relevant in the context of the assessment of embodied carbon and resource use for products and buildings.

For those of you who find the relationship between the Construction Products Regulation, National Regulation, TC 350 and Product Standards difficult to understand (and I often struggle with it), I recommend a link to an excellent video from Chris Hamans, the CEPMC (Association of European Construction Products Manufacturers) representative on TC 350, which sets this out clearly and makes it easy to understand – a significant achievement!

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About constructionlca

Co-author Green Guide to Specification, expert in Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), EPDs and sustainability for the construction materials sector Researching Building LCA and how we can increase uptake at the Open University. Tweets as @constructionlca
This entry was posted in Construction Products Regulation, EPD, LCA, Life cycle assessment, Standards, TC 350 and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Regulation and Standards for Sustainable Construction

  1. Marie says:

    It’s good that they have set up these regulations already so that we would be bound to use materials that would not affect the health of people.

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