ARMA Completes EPDs for Five Types of Asphalt Roofing

The Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association (ARMA) has completed a multi-year effort to develop Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) for asphalt roofing systems. These five new documents provide information that building and construction professionals can use both to support environmental aspects of roof systems as part of sustainable building projects and to better understand their impact over time. EPDs are now available for asphalt shingle roofing systems, SBS and APP modified bitumen systems, and built-up roofing systems. 

When architects and specifiers embark on new green building initiatives, they need to validate the environmental aspects of the building materials they use. EPDs are used to provide this information and to support the credibility of environmental claims.  ARMA worked with thinkstep, a sustainability consulting company, and with UL Environment to validate the EPDs.  These comprehensive documents outline the environmental attributes associated with the manufacturing of various asphalt-related roofing materials. 
ARMA’s development of these five EPDs reflects the continued use and advancement of asphalt roofing materials. In some cases, these documents are needed to fulfill requirements for green building rating systems and initiatives such as Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), Green Globes, and the International Green Construction Code (IgCC).

“As the worldwide building and construction community continues to expand the focus on creating environmentally responsible and resource-efficient building projects, asphalt roofing has a critical role to play,” said Reed Hitchcock, ARMA’s executive vice president. “ARMA is committed to supporting sustainable building initiatives, and we are proud to provide the industry with this important environmental information.”

“These EPDs will help architects and engineers make sustainable choices in roof design,” said Amy Ferryman, chair of ARMA’s Sustainability Task Force. “Our work to develop these resources helps ensure that the asphalt roofing industry can fully participate in increasingly important green building practices.”
The five EPDs from ARMA are now publically available and can be accessed on ARMA’s website.

Duro-Last Achieves Gold Certification for All Membrane Product Lines

Duro-Last has achieved gold certification for all membrane product lines under the NSF American National Standard for Sustainable Roofing Membranes – NSF/ANSI 347. Certified by UL, this standard represents that Duro-Last manufactures a product that is third-party verified as sustainable, durable and high performing. The certification applies to Duro-Tuff, Duro-Fleece and Duro-Last EV membranes, in addition to Duro-Last membrane, which was certified in 2015.

With the certification of these four product lines, Duro-Last has the most roofing membrane product lines certified in the industry—furthering the company’s commitment to sustainability and transparency.

“Duro-Last believes in the importance of sustainability,” says Jason Tunney, Duro-Last’s executive vice president and general counsel. “These third-party certifications confirm what we already know about our products.”

Duro-Last has worked with UL for many years on product testing, including the UL 790 Spread of Flame Test, UL 1256 Direct to Deck (insulation) and the UL 2218 Hail Impact Test. As the sustainability business division of UL, a premier global independent safety science company that has championed progress for 120 years, UL Environment works to advance global sustainability, environmental health, and safety by supporting the growth and development of environmentally preferable products, services, and organizations.

NSF/ANSI 347 was developed by the NSF National Center for Sustainability Standards (NCSS) through a consensus-based public process with a multi-stakeholder group of participants and, according to their website, is based on life-cycle assessment principles. NSF/ANSI 347 employs an easy-to-use point system to evaluate roofing membrane products against established prerequisite requirements, performance criteria and quantifiable metrics in five key areas:

  • Product design
  • Product manufacturing
  • Membrane durability
  • Corporate governance
  • Innovation

Obtaining this certification will help Duro-Last’s membranes meet the market demand for products that comply with green building standards and codes like the Green Building Initiative’s Green Globes and the International Green Construction Code (IgCC). Product specifiers and purchasers are under pressure to find products that meet their sustainability criteria, and having the NSF/ANSI 347 certification can give them the peace of mind of specifying a third-party verified product.

Duro-Last has also published environmental product declarations (EPDs) for Duro-Tuff, Duro-Fleece and Duro-Last EV membranes. This is in addition to the previously published EPD for Duro-Last membrane—the first product-specific PVC EPD in the North American roofing industry.

Certified by NSF International, the Duro-Last EPD reports environmental impact data, which assists building contractors, architects and designers in making more informed purchasing decisions. EPDs are increasingly used across many industries to enable product manufacturers to bring transparent environmental data to customers.

“Duro-Last is proud to publish product-specific EPDs for PVC roofing,” Tunney says. “We have always known that the Duro-Last Roofing System is a durable, flexible, serviceable and recyclable product, and now these EPDs can give building owners and specifiers peace of mind.”

MBMA Releases EPDs for Primary Rigid Framing, Secondary Framing and Metal Cladding

In order to meet the increasing demand for unbiased data about the environmental impacts of commercial construction, the Metal Building Manufacturers Association (MBMA) has released Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) for three metal building product categories: primary rigid framing, secondary framing, and metal cladding for roofs and walls.

MBMA partnered with UL Environment (ULE) to develop and certify these EPDs, which summarize the cradle-to-gate environmental impacts of a metal building system. The cradle-to-gate method is used to describe the impact of producing products, from raw material extraction, through processing, fabrication and up to the finished product leaving the manufacturing facility.

EPDs provide specifiers, builders and other industry professionals with transparent third-party documentation of the environmental impacts of products, including global warming potential, ozone depletion, acidification and other factors. The LEED V4 green building rating system encourages the use of EPDs, which are important for earning credits in the program.

MBMA has been studying the sustainable attributes of metal buildings for several years, starting with the collection of the industry’s LCI data, and using it to perform whole-building LCA analysis to compare its products to other forms of construction. Through these studies, MBMA has shown that the structural efficiency of metal building systems is a key contributor to their sustainable performance when compared to conventional construction.

“There is a growing need to simplify and harmonize the decision-making processes for architects and specifiers that must choose building materials for construction,” says Dan Walker, associate general manager of MBMA. “MBMA members are dedicated to educating others about the sustainable performance of metal building systems, and these EPDs will effectively do that for the design community.”

Metal building systems are custom-engineered and fabricated in accordance with strict quality assurance standards, and with almost no scrap generated. Designers are beginning to realize that the structural efficiency of this approach brings tangible benefits, from a sustainability and cost-savings perspective. The completion of these EPDs gives designers the confidence that they are making a wise choice from financial and environmental aspects.

MBMA’s EPDs can now be found on the UL Environment website.

PIMA Announces Environmental Product Declarations for Polyiso Roof and Wall Insulations

Consistent with its delivery of energy-efficient and sustainable building insulation solutions, the Polyisocyanurate Insulation Manufacturers Association (PIMA) announced the receipt of third party-verified ISO-compliant Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) for polyisocyanurate (polyiso) roof and wall insulations as manufactured by PIMA members across North America. An EPD is an internationally recognized and standardized tool that reports the environmental impacts of products.

These EPDs document that the energy-savings potential of polyiso roof and wall insulation during a typical 60-year building life span is equal to up to 47 times the initial energy required to produce, transport, install, maintain, and eventually remove and dispose of the insulation. In addition to a high return on embodied energy, the EPDs document that polyiso roof and wall insulation offer high unit R-value per inch, zero ozone depletion potential, recycled content, opportunity for reuse and outstanding fire performance.

Beyond providing consistent and comparable environmental impact data, the PIMA polyiso EPDs also present information about additional environmental and energy characteristics, including the high net return on energy provided by polyiso roof and wall insulation.

Specifically, the polyiso EPDs describe the environmental impacts of the combined weighted average production for PIMA member manufacturing locations located across the United States and Canada, based on an established set of product category rules applicable to all types of building thermal insulation. The environmental impacts reported in the PIMA polyiso EPDs are derived from independently verified cradle-to-grave life cycle assessment (LCA) process, including all critical elements related to the resourcing, production, transport, installation, maintenance, and eventual removal and replacement of polyiso roof and wall insulation.

Using the LCA process, the PIMA polyiso roof and wall insulation products are evaluated on a number of impact categories including global warming potential, ozone depletion potential, eutrophication potential, acidification potential, and smog creation potential, as well as other environmental indicators including primary energy demand, resource depletion, waste to disposal, waste to energy, and water use.

PIMA polyiso roof and wall insulation EPDs also meet the requirements of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) LEED v4 Green Building Rating System under Credit MRC-2 Building Product Disclosure and Optimization: Environmental Product Declarations as industry-wide or generic declarations that may be valued as one-half of an eligible product for the purposes of credit calculation.

“These third party-verified EPDs for polyiso roof and wall insulation products produced by PIMA manufacturers reflect our industry’s commitment to sustainability and transparency in reporting environmental performance,” says Jared Blum, president of PIMA. “These EPDs will be a valuable tool to provide environmental information to all building and design professionals, and they should be especially helpful in meeting emerging criteria for green building design.”

Spray Polyurethane Foam Alliance Completes ISO-compliant Life Cycle Assessments

The Spray Polyurethane Foam Alliance (SPFA), the educational and technical resource to the spray polyurethane foam industry, has announced the completion of an ISO-compliant Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) for three generic formulations that include open-cell, closed-cell and roofing foams. The Life Cycle Assessment is published and available as a free download from the SPFA website. Using the results of the LCA, the SPFA has collaborated with UL Environments to develop an Environmental Product Declaration (EPD), which allows spray polyurethane foam contractors to assist sustainable building designers in obtaining proper credit among leading sustainable building programs for spray foam insulation and roofing materials use.

An EPD is a third-party reviewed document that summarizes the results of the more detailed LCA. EPDs are required by design professionals to satisfy requirements of many sustainable building programs, such as the US Green Building Council’s LEED v4 program, the International Green Construction Code and GreenGlobes, to name a few. For example, the current LEED v4 program enables a building design to earn 1/4 point for using products that have an LCA; 1/2 point for products with a generic EPD (such as the one from SPFA), and 1 point for products using a product-specific EPD from a material supplier.

SPF contractors may now provide copies of the generic SPFA EPD to sustainable building designers to assure proper credit for SPF insulation and roofing materials. The EPD can also be used as general supporting information for customers wanting to use ‘green’ products. The SPFA EPD and related Transparency Briefs for each foam class are now available at no charge from the UL Environments website.