New Draft Standard for Living Building Products

building products checklist

Construction products containing harmful materials such as asbestos, mercury and petrochemical fertilisers and pesticides, and certain wood treatments will not meet the requirements of a new draft standard designed to assure builders that manufactured goods certified under it are congruent with the requirements of the Living Building Challenge in Australia.

Releasing its GreenRate: Living Building Challenge (LBC) Standard earlier this week, Global Green Tag, an organisation which provides green product certification, says the new draft standard will support the LBC program. The international program seeks to ensure buildings operate cleanly, beautifully and efficiently by requiring projects to meet 20 rigorous imperatives, including net-zero energy, waste and water, over a minimum of 12 months of continuous occupancy.

To meet the new standards, subject to exceptions, building projects will not be able to contain any of the 14 chemicals or materials specified under the International Living Future Institute’s ‘red list’, which are considered to be harmful either to the environment or to human health.

hawaii preparatory academy energy lab

hawaii preparatory academy energy lab

In addition, products containing timber or wood fibre will need to be 100 per cent FSC certified or come from salvageable sources, while those containing raw materials such as stone and rock, metal and minerals will require independent certification for sustainable resource extraction and fair labour practices if such certification is available in the location of procurement.

The objective behind the draft standard is to provide builders with assurances that products that are certified as meeting the standard will satisfy LBC requirements from a building materials perspective.

Global GreenTag program director David Baggs says the draft standard will support the green building sector by simplifying the increasingly complex decision making processes surrounding sustainable products.

“By creating a specific standard for LBC (as we did with Green Star®) we have developed another tool specific certification mark that makes product selection on green criteria, a black and white process,” Baggs says. “It also makes it easy for manufacturers to communicate the benefits of their products with ultimate clarity”.

Comments about the new standard are open until March 8.

By Ahn Jae Wook
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