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Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
Green Building Bible, fourth edition (both books)
These two books are the perfect starting place to help you get to grips with one of the most vitally important aspects of our society - our homes and living environment.

PLEASE NOTE: A download link for Volume 1 will be sent to you by email and Volume 2 will be sent to you by post as a book.

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    • CommentAuthordrjonnyc
    • CommentTimeJan 11th 2008
    As a main contractor we are working on more and more projects that are enrolled in the BREEAM standard. Depending on the rating required, all i seem to be doing to ahieve the required points is producing paperwork. Does having a project enrolled in the BREEAM standard actually make a big difference or is it more of a red tape exercise?
    • CommentAuthorPeter A
    • CommentTimeJan 11th 2008
    It does seem to go on forever and doesn't really give the impression of being joined up. To be honest it's not that much fun on the otherside of the fence to you. Perhaps when they get round to bringing it in line with the Code for Sustainable Homes it will be a bit more practicable and not drill down into to great a detail.
    We often have to do pre-assessments to guide contractors, does anybody ever check what you do?
    • CommentAuthordrjonnyc
    • CommentTimeJan 12th 2008
    We have an actions list that we have to complete, the information is passed onto our BREEAM assesor who collates what we have done an provides us with a certificate at the end of the day if we have achieved the rating. The only checking that is done us by the BREEAM assesor, and they only look at the paperwork. From our point of view BREEAM is just a papertrail we have to complete to complete the contract, just seems to eat up our time at work when we could be getting on the building the thing.
    Basically its QA to make sure that the targets have been achieved. BREEAM, operating via a third party assessor, ensures that greenwash is minimised. It is an arduous process but until it all becomes instinct for all people in the design/construction team audits such as this are necessary. Arguably as people become more familiar with the process the collation of the material becomes more natural and the cost of implementation should reduce.

    Using whole systems analysis the BREEAM process can probably pay for itself; as an example 13% of UK waste is virgin construction materials skipped before use, furthermore construction waste accounts for 50% of UK waste, by reducing this waste by 80% or more (as has been dome in Sweden/Denmark) then the cost of the BREEAM audit becomes a no cost option. Using other examples efficiency (energy, water, fuel+transport etc) then it could if harnessed correctly even provide a value engineering mechanism. On this basis by implementing a leas-cost/end-use strategy an EMS could naturally filter data and ensure the required environmental standards and ensure that BREEAM audits become a no cost option.

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