A Sustainable Alliance?

Brexit is posing many unanswered questions, but the Alliance for Sustainable Building Products is sticking to its guns. Gary Newman, executive chair is urging other similar bodies to work even harder for further collaboration with likeminded groups across Europe.

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Brexit is posing many unanswered questions, but the Alliance for Sustainable Building Products is sticking to its guns. Gary Newman, executive chair is urging other similar bodies to work even harder for further collaboration with likeminded groups across Europe.

For those passionate about sustainable construction, these are very uncertain times. Like so much in our daily lives, Brexit brings into question the quality and sustainability frameworks which the building industry has developed over the last 40 years, within a European context. From CE marking to EPD, expensive re-commissioning, divergence from wider global standards or, at worst, abandonment are all current risks. But we must all make plans to deal with this radically different and potentially more isolated future.

As for the ASBP, we will put greater focus upon strengthening our ties with like–minded organisations and networks in the rest of Europe. After all, much of the inspiration and leadership for sustainable construction has come from our European partners. We will redouble our efforts to find ways to influence UK policy on all the issues that we are passionate about, such as natural products, circular economy, product reuse, low embodied carbon and healthy products and buildings. We will continue to communicate the value of standards as a mark of progress and not simply red tape. After all, the need to trade will ensure that we remain bound by European standards even though we will soon have little influence over their development.

The ASBP will seek to find innovative ways to generate new knowledge in collaboration with our members and our University partners who will inevitably face reduced research budgets. We propose to join the Construction Products Association (CPA) as an associate member, to help us to better support our members through this period of uncertainty. We will, of course, continue to champion the cause of sustainable products, and with that in mind, please check out our Product of the Month, attend our informative events, get involved and join up.