In order to communicate reliable environmental data to the building sector, the aluminium industry has developed regional Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) for aluminium building products in line with international standards.

“Environmental Product Declaration tools are the most comprehensive and transparent type of environmental information. To ensure quality control both the aluminium industry tool and the life cycle data has been externally verified by Five Winds International,” says Dr Christian Leroy, European Aluminium.

An EPD is the most comprehensive and transparent type of environmental information, designed for business-to-business communication. It takes into account the whole product life cycle and computes environmental data in a “cradle to grave” approach in order to calculate a set of internationally recognized indicators, such as “use of primary energy”, “greenhouse gas emission” or “water consumption”.

The European Aluminium EPD programme addresses “Products for building applications where Aluminium contributes significantly to the product’s performance characteristics“ and has been developed in accordance with the following international standards:

  1. ISO 21930:2007 Sustainability in building construction – Environmental declaration of building products
  2. ISO 14025:2006 Environmental labels and declarations – Type III environmental declarations – Principles and procedures
  3. ISO 14040:2006 Environmental management – Life cycle assessment – Principles and framework
  4. ISO 14044:2006 Environmental management – Life cycle assessment – Requirements and guidelines

The Aluminum Association has developed EPDs for the following North American aluminium products:

Hot-Rolled Aluminium: Aluminium sheet and plate rolled at a high temperature. Plate and thicker-gauge sheet may be used for structural applications including aircraft and aerospace.

Cold-Rolled Aluminium: Previously hot-rolled sheet subsequently rolled at or near room temperature to make the metal thinner and stronger. Often used to make building roofs and wall plates, sheet for transportation applications and packaging material.  

Extruded Aluminium: Aluminium that is fed through a hydraulic press to make profiles. Often used to make building windows, doors, curtain walls, automotive parts, as well as various consumer durable products. 

Primary Ingot: Raw material produced directly from bauxite and used to make cast, rolled or extruded aluminium.

Secondary Ingot: Raw material produced from recycled aluminum and used to make cast, rolled or extruded aluminium.