The Green Star 'PVC' credit was introduced into the Materials category all Green Star rating tools in April 2010 following an extensive review of the life cycle of PVC building products. The PVC Credit awards up to two Green Star points for products in PVC's most common applications - pipe, fittings and conduit, cable, flooring and resilient wall coverings - that are independently verified as achieving best practice performance in PVC manufacturing and product stewardship.
Best practice manufacturing is defined by specific, measurable criteria set out in the 'Best Practice Guidelines for PVC in the Built Environment'.
In 2014, the GBCA updated and revised its suite of eight Green Star tools for different building types into four new tools:
- Green Star - Design & As Built to guide the sustainable design and construction of a range of building types;
- Green Star – Interiors related to interior fit-outs of buildings;
- Green Star – Communities, for projects at the neighbourhood, precinct or community scale; and
- Green Star – Performance, supporting higher levels of operations efficiency within existing buildings.
PVC is considered in the first two tools and the types of PVC applications have been revised and expanded to include blinds and permanent formwork.
Registration under the original Green Star tools – now known as the Legacy Green Star tools – is open until December 2015. New building and construction projects are expected to register under the new tools.
Points for PVC in the Legacy tools
In the Legacy tools, points are awarded as follows:
- One point where 60% of the most common PVC products (by cost) complies with the Best Practice guidelines
- Two points where 90% of common PVC products (by cost) complies.
PVC applications other than pipes, cables, conduit, flooring and wall coverings can be specified in Green Star projects without discrimination, however they will not be eligible to earn points under the PVC Credit.
Points for PVC in Design & As Built and Interior
In Green Star - Design and As Built and Green Star – Interiors, the Materials category has been significantly revised. It consists of four credits: no.19 Life Cycle Impacts; no.20 Responsible Building Materials; no.21 Sustainable Products and no.22 Construction and Demolition Waste.
Under the Responsible Building Materials credit 1 point is offered where 90% (by cost) of all PVC pipes, cables, flooring, permanent formwork and blinds in a project meet the Best Practice guidelines for PVC.
PVC applications other than pipes, cables, conduit, flooring, permanent formwork and blinds can be specified in these Green Star projects without discrimination, however they will not be eligible to earn points under this credit.
Any PVC products that have achieved third party certifications (eg Global GreenTag, GECA) or provide Environmental Product Declarations can earn points under the Sustainable Products credit. However, such certification does not remove the consideration of those products from the Responsible Sourcing credit if they are pipes, cables, flooring, permanent formwork or blinds.
Identifying Best Practice PVC products
Visit the online register of products that have been verified as Best Practice PVC.