Manufacturers who wish to include an environmental message on their product(s) should first have a life cycle analysis (LCA) carried out and should have it registered in this database. Manufacturers who market products without environmental message can also use the database to declare their LCA.
The database is accessible to the public, which means that architects, public authorities or consumers can also consult (part of) the data entered in the database.
Belgian EPD programme
The FPS of Health has established a set of rules and procedures to follow when you wish to draw up an EPD for the Belgian context. The rules and procedures are based on the Royal Decree on environmental messages and European and international standards. More information about the operation of the programme and reference documents can be found on the web page of the B-EPD programme.
What are the benefits of an EPD?
- It gives a complete and objective view on a product’s environmental impact.
- Manufacturers are provided better insight into their production process allowing them to draw up improvement plans that are good for the environment and often allow cost savings.
- It provides a correct assessment of building products, not only on product level but also on building level, including specific data.
Assessment on building level
The regions are cooperating to develop a calculation module to calculate the environmental impact of building products on building level. This tool will use generic data for some time. We have started the preparatory work in order to link the database to this calculation module. This means that by the end of 2017 it will be possible to make building assessments that are also based on specific environmental information.
How does the database work?
The manufacturer should first have a life cycle analysis (LCA) carried out for his product(s). He then has his LCA verified with regard to its conformity with the NBN EN 15804 standard. He can register those verified results in the database. This is done in various steps: first, the manufacturer enters his business data and then he creates an environmental profile for each product by entering the LCA data.
A collective environmental profile can be referred to provided that this has already been registered in the database and the owner of the collective environmental profile has granted his approval. This is only allowed when the environmental profile is representative of your product.
Please note: The environmental profiles do not allow for comparisons between products that are only based on database data. Lower environmental impact materials can still produce higher impact buildings, for instance because thicker walls and foundations are needed.
Detailed information about the EPDs that are allowed and those that are not can be found in the general programme instructions of the B-EPD programme.
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