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Sustainability assessment to overcome barriers to renewable construction materials - LK0826

The project will produce information, guidance and tools that are crucial for the environmental understanding of renewable construction materials and their comparison to conventional alternatives. This will enable the many companies in the sector to make well-informed decisions about the likely benefits of crop-based materials without the cost and time requirements of detailed life-cycle impact studies. It will also allow the industry to interact with clients with a more informed approach, further stimulating the growth of materials derived from crops. The aim of the project is to generate this information and in doing so facilitate the expansion and growth of non-food crop and animal derived materials in UK markets.
This project will build on work that was completed in 2004 through DTI as part of the Sustainable Technologies Initiative, which presented the environmental and social implications of a range of composite materials and processes in ‘The Green Guide to Composites’ and a free industry software assessment tool . This project will complement this work and improve the content by the inclusion of information on non-food crop and animal derived materials, including composite structural materials, insulation, paints & finishes, textiles (membranes, vapour barriers etc), floor products and roofing.
1. To locate existing data as well as collecting new data for the life-cycle assessment
2.To compare natural and conventional materials under identical life-cycle scenarios
3.To create guides around a simple scoring method for those new to sustainability
4.To produce a complementary interactive web-based version of the guide
5.To disseminate the guides through the major UK industry bodies and media
Project Documents
• TPS - Two Page Summary : BIOCOMPASS LINK Project Factsheet[1]   (159k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2007

To: 2009

Cost: £179,525
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Reichhold UK Ltd, Engineered Composites, Fibreforce Composites Ltd, Tony Gee and Partners LLP, Housing Corporation, Second Nature UK Ltd, Feilden and Mawson LLP, Willmott Dixon Construction, NetComposites Ltd, Hambleside Danelaw Ltd, Plant Fibre Technologies Ltd, Building Research Establishment Ltd, Hemcore Ltd
Agriculture and Climate Change              
Materials Science              
Renewable materials              
Sustainable Development              
Sustainable Farming and Food Science              
Fields of Study
Non-Food Crops