Concrete Europe Manifesto for Decarbonised and Circular Buildings and Infrastructure
2 min read

Concrete Europe Manifesto for Decarbonised and Circular Buildings and Infrastructure

Leading up to the European elections of 6 to 9 June 2024, Concrete Europe, the European Association representing the sectoral associations of the concrete value chain, would like to outline the key priorities for the upcoming political cycle:

  1. Concrete Europe believes that the next 5 years should focus on implementing the legislative acts adopted under the European Green Deal (EGD) with policy coherence, while supporting the competitiveness of the European Union (EU) industry, as has been done in other regions across the globe.
  2. European citizens across the EU require more new and renovated buildings. To ensure access to housing at reasonable costs for all Europeans, particularly during times when their purchasing power is limited, the option of renovation or rebuilding with improved energy efficiency and lower CO₂ intensity should be prioritised on the political agenda of the European Commission.
  3. Concrete Europe Members believe that, to achieve our common EGD’s goals, EU policies should be technology and material neutral. By this, we mean that EU policies must establish clear goals and common methodologies based on a full life cycle analysis (from cradle-to-grave/cradle) using up-to-date data. This ensures that all materials can compete fairly in contributing to the challenges Europe is confronted with, notably in the built environment.

As Concrete Europe, we believe that concrete offers solutions to our common challenges by enabling a circular economy and reducing Whole Life Carbon in buildings and infrastructure. That is why we call on the next European Commission to:

  1. Minimise landfilling of recyclable construction and demolition waste (CDW) through a ban or increased taxation and the increase of the CDW targets.
  2. Develop optimised policies for the use of recycled material from CDW (establish end-of-
    waste criteria for construction materials, increase the recycled content of construction materials in building and infrastructure based on availability and performance ).
  3. Ensure facilitated access to local essential raw materials for construction, both primary and secondary, just as it is done for critical raw materials, recognising that primary raw materials will always be needed.
  4. When developing the calculation of the life-cycle global warming potential (GWP) of new buildings as part of the implementation of the revised Energy Performance of Buildings (EPBD), consider both embodied and operational carbon throughout the whole-life cycle of a construction work, including service life (lifetime, durability and adaptability), end-of-life and potential benefits,
    to reduce Whole Life Carbon.
  5. Include permanent carbon storage in EU built environment policies and favor permanent carbon storage over temporary carbon storage.
  6. Avoid focusing only on global warming potential but include indicators on other environmental impacts (such as biodiversity or ecotoxicity) affecting the built environment to avoid trade-offs.
  7. Set a clear role for public procurement by developing material neutral green public procurement criteria for buildings to enhance the uptake of low carbon and recycled materials and promote their acceptance. This needs to be done in parallel with the development of availability of environmental performance indicators of construction products in digital format through the Construction Products Regulation implementation.
  8. Establish structural coordination of all EU Commission initiatives related to the fire safety of European buildings.

Finally, we believe that the Construction Ecosystem can undergo its sustainable and digital transition successfully
if accompanied by a supportive skills policy framework.

Publish your Press Releases

Interested in our free daily E-news