The development of Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) for ready mix and manufactured concrete in the US is ramping up.
The General Services Administration (GSA) conducted a two-week survey of concrete producers, formally issued as “Request for Information Regarding Concrete: Environmental Product Declarations and Low Embodied Carbon Products.” The survey seeks information on producers’ ability to provide mix-specific, cradle-to-gate Type III EPDs and insights on concrete exhibiting low embodied carbon characteristics, with responses analysed by federal agencies.
A strong focus will also be put on the zero-to-high slump mixes presented or certified as embodying carbon lower than the industry average.
The GSA survey is part of a wider effort surrounding White House Executive Order 14057 – Catalysing Clean Energy Industries and Jobs Through Federal Sustainability. The order and GSA survey put relevant bodies into action, including the US Department of Defense and Transportation and the Environmental Protection Agency.
The first database of digitalised EPDs, presented as the open-access EC3 tool is another development, fostering the embodied carbon benchmarking, assessment and reduction among architects, engineers, owners, contractors, suppliers, manufacturers, and policymakers.
The database was launched as the EPD was gaining traction in the market, owing to the adoption of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building rating system. The newest version, “LEED v4” made its debut at the 2013 Greenbuild, and propelled supplier or manufacturer EPD submittals.
Significant funding is being allocated for EDP-related projects through the Inflation Reduction Act, which aims to reinforce low-carbon construction material advocacy and technical support measures that are currently underway at the Federal Highway Administration.
Environmental Product Declarations are the major tools Federal Highway Administration aims to regulate over the next two years.
To learn more about the pathway in how the US plans to use concrete EPDs click here.
Or to learn more about the significant funding for EDP-related projects click here.