BREEAM, the UK originating sustainable buildings certification programme, has approved the use of additional third party certification schemes for the purpose of demonstrating compliance with the BREEAM criteria for “volatile organic compound (VOC) emission levels (products)”. Among the schemes and their operators are:
- Eurofins Product Testing A/S in Denmark and Germany
- Indoor Air Comfort
- Indoor Air Comfort GOLD
“This is a further move to recognising additional certification schemes which address the important issue of VOCs in construction and fit-out products. We are pleased to recognise these European schemes that increases BREEAM’s international coverage and applicability in this area” says Alan Yates, Technical Director for BREEAM.
“The inclusion of the Indoor Air Comfort certification in the list of third party certification schemes that are accepted by BREEAM to show compliance with the BREEAM criteria on VOC levels demonstrates the ambition of BREEAM to make use of existing state-of-art programmes, and to ease life for building planners to identify compliant products. We also welcome the acceptance of other European schemes such as the EMICODE, M1 and AgBB” says Soren Junker Nielsen, General Manager of Eurofins Product Testing A/S.
This additional means of compliance is applicable to the following current BREEAM schemes and can also be retrospectively applied to superseded versions of these schemes that include similar VOC criteria:
- BREEAM International: New Construction 2013 (Hea 02) & Non-Domestic Refurbishment and Fit-out 2015 (Hea 02)
- BREEAM UK: New Construction 2014 (Hea 02), Domestic Refurbishment 2014 (Hea 03) & Non-Domestic Refurbishment and Fit-out 2014 (Hea 02)
The cited regulation was published on 29 August 2015 in the first version of the BREEAM Guidance Note ‘GN22 BREEAM Recognised Schemes for VOC Emissions from Building Products’. All BREEAM assessors were notified in the monthly BREEAM news email. GN22 is available from the ‘Resources’ section of the BREEAM website (see http://www.breeam.org/page.jsp?id=718 – this requires registration of your email address to access this document, but this is easy to do and for free). Please see also BREEAM – EUROFINS press release.
The new regulation will ease the identification of compliant materials for BREEAM certified construction projects, and it will support manufacturers in demonstrating BREEAM compliance of their products if they already obtained one of the referenced labels or certifications.