Vienna, 23rd March 2021 – “Healthy materials for healthy buildings” was the title under which Michael Haugeneder, Managing Director of ATP sustain Vienna, spoke at the Future of Building. The focus of this year’s international construction congress and B2B cooperation exchange was sustainability in the building sector. And, with around 1,500 participants from over 80 nations and 30 speakers, the online event was a complete success.
Michael Haugeneder sees the EU Green Deal and the related classification system as an opportunity to not only contribute to climate protection, but also build better buildings in the future: “I think that the EU classification is a tool that we must use on the real estate market in order to highlight the different qualities of buildings. And, if we do this, the philosophy of the financial market will also change.” For this EU classification enables investors to more strongly focus their investments on sustainable technologies and companies and, hence, make a decisive contribution to the EU becoming climate-neutral by 2050.
The two pillars upon which the EU classification is based are, Haugeneder explained, the circular economy and the environmental impact of buildings. As an example of the latter, the law completely forbids the use of asbestos in buildings, while also strongly limiting that of carcinogenic VOCs (volatile organic compounds) and formaldehyde emissions. The key aspect of the circular economy, on the other hand, is the removal of materials that endanger health from the reuse and recycling processes. Hence, in the case of new buildings, the risk of future users having to deal with unhealthy surroundings will be eliminated and, in the case of refurbishment projects, the existing substances and materials should be analyzed in a way that ensures that appropriate solutions for these are found.
You can watch the entire event here (Haugeneder from 1:40:18).