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Facts about environment and product assessments

Woodsafe's products are evaluated through the majority of systems e.g. Sunda Hus, Building Product Assessment, and declared according to E-BVD, A20 and others.

All documents and declarations are available through a link or page for downloading documents.

Assessment systems

The Nordic Swan Ecolabel is the Nordic region's official eco-label. The Nordic Swan Ecolabel sets the product's environment and health assessment in accordance with its own criteria, but which does not comply with the ECHA classification for substances such as boric acid. Subject, e.g. boric acid, is classified with an increased limit value according to criteria for H360 to not be subject to labeling if less than 5.5% by weight, however, there is a duty to provide information if the product contains more than 0.3% by weight. Despite this fact, the Nordic Swan Ecolabel generally applies the limit value of 0.3% by weight, even though the limit is 5.5% by weight. Levels below this level are not classifying.

Fire-impregnated wood is excluded from the Nordic Swan Ecolabel criteria. It is clear on the Nordic Swan Ecolabel's official website (www.svanen.se) under Appendix 8 that fire impregnation is not covered by the Nordic Swan Ecolabel's assessment criteria.

Worth knowing is that environmental assessment systems, e.g. The Nordic Swan Ecolabel, are voluntary assessment systems that cannot replace statutory requirements for fire safety, such as The National Board of Housing, Building and Planning's BBR and the European Commission's building product ordinance CPR 305/2011, EN14915 which are exhaustive requirements for performance.

BREEAM (BRE Environmental Assessment Method) is a voluntary environmental certification system developed in Britain in the early 1990s by BRE.

It was initially a state-owned institution but has been privatised and is today owned by a foundation consisting of industry operators.

It is important to know that BREEAM does not classify the building based on an individual product.

It is a shared score that individual products contribute to, in general, BREEAM classifies the building as a whole. BREEAM has today been used to certify over 500,000 buildings* and over 2 million buildings are registered for certification.

BREEAM is the most widely spread of the international systems in Europe, with equivalent systems used in other parts of the world including LEED in America, Green Star in Australia and CASBEE in Japan.

In addition to the international certification systems, there are hundreds of national systems developed by different companies and researchers.

In Sweden, the Swedish Green Building Council, a member organisation for sustainable urban development, has adapted BREEAM to Swedish conditions and the Swedish version, BREEAM-SE, has been the version of BREEAM used in the Swedish market since 2013. There are a number of other countries that have done similar work such as the Netherlands, Norway and Spain.

The buildings are certified according to the following grading scale:

BREEAM-SE can be used for newly constructed buildings as well as for rebuilding. The environmental performance of buildings is assessed in a number of different areas.

There are minimum requirements for project management, building energy use, indoor climate such as ventilation and lighting, water management, waste management, land use and environmental impact.

BREEAM also assesses and points out how the building is situated in relation to public communications, choice of building material and any pollution that the building may cause. Additional points can be achieved for how innovative the building is in its technical solutions.

Source: Breeam.com

The LEED™ Green Building Rating System is the most well-known assessment system, developed and managed by the non-profit US Green Building Council.
It is important to know that LEED does not classify the building based on any individual product.

The first version came out in 1999. LEED* is adapted to all types of buildings by developing different versions from the base version. LEED can be used in both the design and operation stages as well as for existing buildings.

The version of LEED most commonly used to certify commercial properties assesses the building's environmental performance from the areas: environment, water use, energy use, materials and indoor climate. In addition, bonus points can be achieved for project innovation and regional considerations.

Source: Sweden Green Building Council

The system is the most widely used in Sweden, with over 1000 certified buildings. It can be used for most buildings, ranging from single-family homes and multi-family houses to schools and offices. Miljöbyggnad has been developed for the Swedish market and is therefore based on construction and government regulations and Swedish construction practices.

Miljöbyggnad is easy to certify and cost-effective. The system can be used for both new and existing buildings, regardless of size, and has three different grades: Gold, Silver and Bronze.

All Miljöbyggnad certificates are reviewed and approved by a third party. This means that each application is reviewed by independent specialists who ensure that the building meets the requirements of Miljöbyggnad.

Property owners who want to certify their building are advised to hire a certified environmental building coordinator for their project. These people have training in how Miljöbyggnad works, know which indicators need to be analysed, and what should be reported and assessed. Having a certified environmental building coordinator in your project is highly recommended in order to make the certification process as simple as possible.

Miljöbyggnad is owned and developed by the Swedish Green Building Council, which also carries out certifications.

The latest version of the system is Miljöbyggnad 3.0, which becomes mandatory for all new registrations starting 1 January, 2018.

Source: Sweden Green Building Council