30 September 2020

Press release:  ‘Construction sector must play its part for a climate-neutral Europe’

Construction provides the roofs over our heads, the roads we drive and cycle on, and tunnels we build to shorten distances. However, the sector has a major environmental impact. If the EU wants to achieve its emission reduction goals, laws will need to make sure the construction sector plays its part, says ECOS, the environmental NGO expert in standardisation.

On 29 September, ECOS held an interactive online conference to explore how EU laws should realise Europe’s environmental sustainability ambitions in the construction sector. Participants included high-level representatives from the European Commission, research institutes, the construction industry and environmental NGOs.

Justin Wilkes, ECOS Executive Director, said: ‘The current framework remains unfit to deliver construction products that will help build a sustainable built environment. To successfully reinvent the CPR and to make progress, we need ambitious and applicable EU-level product performance requirements, namely for environmental sustainability.’

Wilkes welcomed the constructive approach of the Commission, national representatives and industry during the conference, stating: ‘Today’s discussion has shown that despite major complexities, we can certainly find a clear and effective way forward in reducing the environmental impact of the sector. Now we need strong EU leadership, and cooperation between all interested stakeholders to make this a reality.’

To inform the upcoming discussions, ECOS has just launched two reports exploring in detail how EU legislation can ensure the construction sector, and energy intensive industries become more environmentally sustainable. The first paper looks at climate, industrial and construction policies and recommends how standards can better support decarbonisation [1]. The second one focuses on how the CPR should be reinvented to encourage more environmentally sustainable construction products and built environment [2].

Press contact: Ivo Cabral – ivo.cabral@ecostandard.org

Notes to editors:

[1] Building Our Green Future Standards To Support Decarbonising Energy-Intensive Industries – https://ecostandard.org/publications/building-our-green-future-standards-to-support-decarbonising-energy-intensive-industries/
 
[2] Construction Products Policy – A Formula For Environmental Sustainability – https://ecostandard.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/ECOS-PAPER-TOWARDS-A-GREENER-CONSTRUCTION-PRODUCTS-POLICY.pdf
 
Background information: ECOS factsheet on cement & concrete – https://ecostandard.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/ECOS-Factsheet-Cement-and-concrete.pdf

ECOS is co-funded by the European Commission and EFTA

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