Wooden high-rises don’t guarantee reduced emissions

Cross-laminated timber building could help fight climate change. But there are risks too and they need to be carefully considered rather than a simple assumption that ‘wood is good’.

Some of the concerns raised in this article highlight the importance of using the existing internationally agreed standards for LCA and environmental claims, which have ironed out many of the potential methodological discrepancies.

We would recommend any companies undertaking LCA to ensure they follow ISO 14040 and ISO 14044 – and where the product covers biogenic carbon to integrate the additional requirements of ISO 14067 for the carbon footprinting of products. ISO 14067 requires that biogenic GHG emissions and removals be included in the study and reported separately.

These requirements have already been incorporated into the current EN 15804 standard, which forms the Product Category Rules for Construction Products, and requires that any products containing biogenic material shall report the end of life modules (C1-C4) – so that full life cycle emissions are reported as well as removals.

Find out more, here.

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