{{ propApi.closeIcon }}
Our industry
Our industry $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
Housing industry insights Economics Data & forecasts Tailored research and analysis Advocacy & policy Advocacy Policy priorities Position statements Submissions News and inspiration Industry news Member alerts Media releases HOUSING Online
Business support
Business support $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
Become an apprentice host Hire an apprentice Why host a HIA apprentice? Apprentice partner program Builder & manufacturer program Industry insurance Construction legal expenses insurance Construction works insurance Home warranty insurance Tradies & tool insurance Member perks Toyota vehicles The Good Guys Commercial Fuel savings See all Planning & safety solutions Building & planning services Safe Work Method Statements (SWMS) Solutions for your business Contracts Online Advertise jobs Trusted support & guidance Contracts & compliance support Industrial relations
Resources & advice
Resources & advice $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
Building it right Building codes Australian standards Getting it right on site See all Building materials & products Concrete, bricks & walls Getting products approved Use the right products for the job See all Managing your business Dealing with contracts Handling disputes Managing your employees See all Managing your safety Safety rules Working with silica See all Building your business Growing your business Maintaining your business See all Other subjects Getting approval to build Sustainable homes See all
Careers & learning
Careers & learning $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
A rewarding career Become an apprentice Apprenticeships on offer Frequently asked questions Study with us Find a course to suit you Qualification courses Learning on demand A job in the industry Get your builder's licence Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Find jobs
HIA community
HIA community $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
Join HIA Sign me up How do I become a member? What's in it for me? Mates rates Get involved Become an award judge Join a committee Partner with us Our initiatives HIA Building Women GreenSmart Kitchen, bathroom and design hub Get to know us Our members Our people Our partners Support for you Charitable Foundation Mental health program
Awards & events
Awards & events $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
Awards Awards program People & Business Awards GreenSmart Australian Housing Awards Awards winners Regional Award winners Australian Housing Award winners 2024 Australian Home of the Year Enter online Industry events Events in the next month Economic outlook National Conference Events calendar
HIA shop
HIA shop $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
Most popular products National Construction Code Vol 1 & 2 Waterproofing wet areas AS 3740:2021 HIA Guide to Waterproofing HIA Guide to NCC Livable Housing Provisions Top categories Building codes & standards Contracts & documents Guides & manuals Safety products Signage For your business Contracts Online Digital Australian Standards Digital Resource Library Forecasts & data
About Contact Newsroom
$vuetify.icons.faTimes
$vuetify.icons.faMapMarker Set my location Use the field below to update your location
Address
Change location
{{propApi.title}}
{{propApi.text}} {{region}} Change location
{{propApi.title}}
{{propApi.successMessage}} {{region}} Change location

$vuetify.icons.faPhone1300 650 620

Embodied emissions of building materials

Regulation of embodied carbon in the built environment is gaining momentum. Embodied carbon assessments are being incorporated into planning, building and procurement requirements in a growing number of countries around the world.

HIA’s Position Statement

  1. The selection and use of low embodied carbon materials should be the choice of customer
    and/or driven through government incentives, as opposed to a mandatory requirement that
    would regulate a maximum target or cap on the embodied (carbon) emission of building
    materials for all homes and apartments.
  2. Any future regulation on embodied carbon of materials needs to apply in a holistic manner,
    considering the whole life cycle of the product any regulation on this issue, must not conflict with
    or compromise other energy efficiency, building or related policies.
  3. Where governments are seeking to introduce mandatory embodied (carbon) emission of
    building materials, the scheme should:
    • be designed by industry and led by HIA
    • be applied at a national level, as opposed to it being introduced by an individual state or
    • territory government or with varying approaches across states
    • establish a national industry-agreed methodology and framework for measuring and reporting embodied carbon
    • have the thresholds or caps set based on industry benchmarking data as opposed to theoretical or academic studies
    • follow the preparation of a regulatory impact assessment that can clearly demonstrate a net benefits to society
    • support locally made and manufactured products over imported products
    • recognise and support innovation in products and materials and investments made in producing alternate or lower carbon materials
    • be introduced over a staged approach over multiple years with initial focus on industrial buildings followed by commercial buildings, multi-residential and lastly on houses
    • only apply to the core elements of the building fabric
    • have rating tools and/or calculators as part of measuring embodied emissions that are simple to use and provide consistent outcomes
    • be implemented and enforced as point of sale obligation, as opposed to it being applied through building certification or planning approvals at a building by building level; and
    • have its introduction supported by a comprehensive industry and home owner education program.

Background

Government regulations over the past two decades have focused on policies to reduce the operational carbon emissions through energy efficiency regulations. This has focused on the building fabric and services to reduce energy use, and in turn emissions, from the operational use.

Globally a number of countries are shifting gears and looking at regulating the embodied emissions of the materials going into buildings, as part of their sustainability commitments.

Regulation of embodied carbon in the built environment is gaining momentum. Embodied carbon assessments are being incorporated into planning, building and procurement requirements in a growing number of countries around the world.

Australia does not currently regulate for embodied carbon measurement for building materials, though it is expected that regulation and potential caps or targets will be considered in future regulations as part of broader discussions as Government look to measures as part of their net zero emission commitments.

Policy endorsed by HIA National Policy Congress: May 2023

Share with your network:
More articles on:
{{ tag.label }} {{ tag.label }} $vuetify.icons.faTimes
Find the latest expert advice, guides and much more!
HIA Advocacy
View all $vuetify.icons.faArrowRight
12 Jun
A migration system for Australias future Discussion paper

HIA recognises the important contribution that skilled migrants make to the Australian economy and the role that a well-designed skilled migration program has in ensuring Australia’s ongoing prosperity.

12 Jun
National Dust Disease Taskforce Phase 2 Consultation Paper

Any definition of ‘engineered stone’ should be targeted to the resin-based, high silica content artificial stone that has been used in the stone benchtop manufacturing industry.

31 May
Illegal Logging Prohibition Amendment Bill 2024

HIA prepared a submission to the Illegal Logging Prohibition Amendment (Strengthening Measures to Prevent Illegal Timber Trade) Bill 2024.

31 May
Building Bill 2024 - Consumer Protection (NSW)

HIA responded to the Consultation Paper on the Building Bill 2024 – Consumer protections for home building work (Paper) issued by the Building Commission in April 2024.

24 May
Jurisdiction of the Federal Safety Commissioner

Are your interested in tendering for federally funded government building work? Use HIA’s flowchart to help you determine if you are required to comply with the Federal Work Health and Safety accreditation scheme.

22 May
BCITF 2024 Statutory Review

Housing Industry Association (HIA) submission to the 2024 Statutory Review of the Building and Construction Industry Training Fund and Levy Collection Act 1990. Attracting, training, and retaining skilled workers is fundamental to the ability of the residential building industry to deliver the homes Australia needs.