Blog 3 - Pioneering a new Europe-wide approach to sustainable buildings
At Knauf Insulation we believe that sustainable construction must consider every aspect of a building’s lifecycle from the sourcing of raw materials, products manufacture, building construction, use and flexibility of the building to the deconstruction and recycling.
It is a vision that is shared by the European Commission which has implemented a two-year pilot project known as Level(s) to “develop indicators to assess environmental performance through the Life Cycle of a building”.
The Level(s) project was an unmissable opportunity for Knauf Insulation and in 2017 we joined forces with the European Commission to create a pilot project building that could contribute to this research.
Work is now well underway on the construction of our new Knauf Insulation Experience Centre in Slovenia, a two-storey, 640m2 building that will include many advanced various insulation solutions and showcase cutting-edge innovations including our Urbanscape Green Solutions, Heraklith Wood Wool, OEM solutions as well as products from Knauf Gypsum, Knauf AMF and other partners.
Not only will the building be the first DGNB certified green building in Slovenia, it will also support the Level(s) initiative by providing feedback on methodology and data for specific areas such as energy efficiency and environmental impacts focusing on Life Cycle Assessment.
“Level(s) is incredibly important to the future of the construction industry because it takes a Life Cycle approach to building sustainability,” says Vincent Briard, our Sustainability and Product Regulatory Affairs Director. “At Knauf Insulation we hope that this initiative will ultimately create the foundations for new sustainable building legislation across Europe.”
Through Environmental Product Declarations (EPD) and dedicated Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) documents Knauf Insulation has always championed a Life Cycle approach to our solutions because it is good for customers, the industry and ultimately the environment.
Level(s) offers a Europe-wide perspective to building Life Cycles by examining sustainable building factors such as energy performance, climate change, resource efficiency, water use and indoor air quality, acoustics and lifecycle costing.
In each of these areas Knauf Insulation can make an important contribution. Our sustainability team understands the importance of integrating Life Cycle Costing into project management; our products are designed to save energy and reduce CO2 emissions; our solutions are made from recycled materials (up to 80% recycled glass in some cases), while our insulation contributes to acoustic comfort and meets Europe’s most demanding indoor environmental standards.
• The new two-storey Knauf Insulation Experience is next to our Škofja Loka plant in Slovenia and will feature areas for demonstrations, digital experiences, show-rooms, offices, technical rooms, lecture halls and meeting rooms. Work will be completed later this year.