The Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) is a standardised way of measuring the environmental impact of a product, it includes verified information on the procurement of the raw materials, energy use and efficiency, content of materials and chemical substances, emissions to air, soil and water and waste generation. It reports the results of a product Life Cycle Assessment and is classified as a Type III eco-label as defined under ISO 14025.
As the consumption of natural resources continues to grow, EPDs are becoming an important way to communicate product sustainability.
Planning authorities are starting to request embodied carbon assessments; Brighton & Hove City Council for example, requires an embodied carbon assessment for developments as part of its planning process.
The information included within the EPD can allow developers to ensure that products specified meet the required environmental performance, as well as providing the information to calculate the embodied carbon of their developments. The Building Information Modelling (BIM) integrated design approach will provide opportunities for whole building life assessment to be carried out, which will hold the data the EPD provides.
Products which have an EPD will allow further BREEAM credits to be gained within the Materials Criteria. EPDs are used in many different European countries; BRE have developed an EPD Scheme in line with the European standard EN 15804:2012 which provides a core set of Product Category Rules for construction products. This provides a structure for all EPDs to be delivered in a standardised way allowing information of the product to be transmitted from scheme to scheme across Europe.
Posted on August 26th, 2013
Author: Alexandra Gilbert