Bound in a deep-green cover, they are now available: the new German Environmental Product Declarations for Concrete. The documents were prepared by the Trade Association for German Precast Construction (Fachvereinigung Deutscher Betonfertigteilbau, FDB) and the Federal Association of the German Ready-Mixed Concrete Industry (Bundesverband der Deutschen Transportbetonindustrie, BTB).
The environmental product declarations are the basis for assessing the sustainability of buildings. On this basis, the client verifies minimization of CO2 emissions during production of the construction materials and during construction of the entire building. For new construction of government buildings, administration facilities, and office buildings, evidence of sustainability is obligatory in Germany. Experts in the sector doubt, however, that these stipulations will also be applied to other kinds of buildings. And yet: providing voluntary evidence can prove beneficial – e.g., as a marketing instrument for the developer.
The authors of the new Environmental Product Declarations for Concrete have intentionally kept their report general. They cover the compressive strength classes from C20/25 to C50/60, i.e., the most frequent applications in concrete construction. No distinction is made, moreover, between in-situ concrete and precast concrete parts. This would be of no significance for the completed building and, in addition, the initiators want to provide planners of buildings arguments for the use of concrete in all its varieties, rather than starting competition among the various industrial segments. With the new Environmental Product Declarations, concrete as construction material can book a valuable entry on the credit side of its (eco) balance.