Challenges and Opportunities of Using Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) in Environmental Performance Comparisons of Concrete
Thursday, February 11, 2021 at 11:00am to 12:00pmVirtual Event
While measuring the environmental impacts of construction materials has evolved rapidly in recent years, comparing the impacts of different products using trusted and transparent information has remained a challenge. To conduct such comparisons, many states have explored legislation that would promote the use of environmental product declarations (EPDs) when making building material procurement decisions. EPDs, however, were originally developed as trusted and verified reporting mechanisms and were not intended for comparative assessments required to support procurement decisions. In particular, the comparison of EPD values for concrete and the associated confidence in the selecting a lower-impact alternative remains a challenge because of issues around functional equivalency, data quality, and methodological choices.
In this webinar, the information existing in the current and past concrete EPDs will be discussed and the challenges of using these documents for assessing the environmental embodied emissions of concrete mix designs will be detailed. Furthermore, recommendations and opportunities for improving the product category rules and framework development for comparative analysis of concrete embodied emissions will be provided in order to improve the power of decision-making without compromising the robustness of the decision.