European Commission issues a Communication on resource efficiency opportunities in the building sector

eussdOn 2nd of July the European Commission published its Circular economy package which includes a Communication on Resource efficiency opportunities in the building sector, a legislative proposal on waste policy review, an overarching Communication “Towards circular economy: a zero waste programme for Europe” and two other communications on green jobs and a green action plan for SMEs.
The package of documents is a follow-up of other EU Environmental initiatives such as the Resource Efficiency Roadmap and the 7th Environment Action Programme and aims at establishing a coherent EU framework to promote the circular economy model. This new model is founded on re-use, recycling and repairing, instead of extracting new resources and landfilling the waste.
The main objectives of the Communication on Resource efficiency opportunities in the building sector are to enhance the use of building materials in more efficient way and to reduce the total environmental impacts throughout the full life-cycle of buildings.
In order to achieve these objectives the Communication suggests a more transparent and comparable information system where the input is based on “empirical and reliable” data. As next step the Commission will develop clearly defined and measurable indicators for building performance and a supporting framework for implementation.
These indicators will take into consideration as a minimum these areas:
  • Total energy use, including embodied energy of products and construction processes
  • Material use and their embodied environmental impacts
  • Durability of construction products
  • Design for deconstruction
  • Management of construction and demolition waste
  • Recycled content in construction materials and products
  • Water in use phase
  • Use intensity of (mostly public) buildings (e.g. flexible functionality for different users during different times of the day)
  • Indoor comfort
The Commission intends to invite the contributions from the concerned stakeholders in developing of the set of indicators.
Read the Active House Alliance Press Release on the publication of the Communication on Resource efficiency opportunities in the building sector.
For more information on the package of documents adopted by the European Commission please see here.
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