Consultants and developers can now download new environmental product declarations (EPDs) for Troldtekt’s various cement-bonded wood wool products. The EPDs state the carbon footprint associated with all stages in the life cycle of the acoustic panels. The EPDs have been verified by the German Institut Bauen und Umwelt e.V. (IBU).
The new EPDs make it easier to get an overview of the total environmental footprint of Troldtekt’s acoustic panels. This is useful when, as a consultant or developer, for example, you want to have your building certified as sustainable.
The environmental impact of raw materials, transport, production, use, disposal and the potential for recycling are reflected in the life cycle analysis on which the EPDs are based. In this way, the EPDs are a useful tool for consultants and developers when gathering and assessing documentation about building materials.
“Transparency and thoroughness have been keywords for us in working with the new EPDs. The life cycle analyses of our products therefore contain data on more stages than are mandatory for EPDs. Furthermore, we have chosen to prepare product-specific EPDs for our various products rather than just working with average values,” says Vibeke Pedersen, technical manager at Troldtekt A/S.
The actual life cycle analyses have been prepared by Stefan E. Danielsson, MSc, who has been affiliated with the cement producer Aalborg Portland. All five EPDs have subsequently been verified and published by Institut Bauen und Umwelt e.V. (IBU). Through reciprocal recognition agreements, Troldtekt’s new EPDs will soon also be published by BRE, EPD International, EPD Denmark and EPD Norway.
The new EPDs replace the old versions from 2014. Since then, Troldtekt has invested tens of millions (EUR) in expanding and modernising its production facilities with new and more energy-efficient technology. This has resulted in a significantly reduced carbon footprint overall (Global Warming Potential).
“The total carbon footprints of our different types of products vary, but have roughly been halved in the acoustic panels’ first life cycle stages A1-A3, which cover our raw materials and production. This is partly due to the fact that since the last EPD, we have switched to using almost entirely renewable energy in our production,” says Vibeke Pedersen.
The raw materials in a Troldtekt acoustic panel are Danish wood and cement. Cement production emits considerable amounts of CO2, but the wood content pulls significantly in the opposite direction. This is because wood binds CO2 when the tree is growing. In addition, the cement means that an acoustic panel absorbs CO2 during its use stage as a result of the chemical process of carbonatisation.
The CO2 which is stored in the wood is released if the Troldtekt panels are burned after the end of their useful life – typically after 50-70 years. This impacts stage C4 in the EPDs, which covers disposal.
“Some material manufacturers state landfill as the disposal method – i.e. the waste is buried. However, this is not a good solution environmentally, and one which we do not have a tradition for using in Denmark, but in an EPD context, landfill does not result in CO2 emissions. To be as credible and transparent as possible, we have stated incineration, even though it gives us a higher carbon footprint in the EPDs,” explains Vibeke Pedersen.
“We believe that within the next few years, it will be possible for end-of-life Troldtekt acoustic panels to add more value in the circular economy. At the moment, we’re working on a pilot project together with several municipalities which involves collecting cement-bonded wood wool waste for use, for example, as a raw material in new cement at Aalborg Portland. This will result in lower CO2 emissions,” says Vibeke Pedersen in conclusion.
Troldtekt has prepared and third party-verified a total of five product-specific EPDs: