Understanding of sustainability higher priority than ever for architects

Sustainability is the number one challenge for the construction industry in the coming years. The sector is one of the most significant sources of emissions, waste and material extraction – all of which makes it a priority for everyone involved to embrace circularity and sustainability wherever they can.

We have discussed previously the important role architects have to play in making sure the sector meets its goals by driving sustainable design and specification choices.

The situation is a challenge for architects as they try to meet the needs of clients, investors, developers and other stakeholders in this are – but it is also an opportunity to innovate with materials, concepts and designs.

Now, research from Architects Datafile suggests that architects are more informed and engaged with sustainability than ever before.

Updates to Parts L and F of the Building Regulations, along with the establishment of Part O, are all being introduced as mandatory requirements architects must meet. All three Parts are involved with making buildings more energy efficient with tighter standards that architects need to know.

The good news is that as many as 53% of architects now say they have a good or very good understanding of what is required of these new standards – a 16% year-on-year increase.

That suggests architects as a group are embracing the challenges ahead and making sure they are armed with the knowledge they need to meet them.

And while the new regulations are designed for residential housing, the size of that sector means lessons learned filter out through all sectors of construction. Changes made are likewise standardised across other sectors.

Every choice an architect makes now is, therefore, important. Most significantly, every material used should be put under scrutiny from the point of view of sustainability.

For example, using the right materials is the key to reducing embodied carbon emissions in the built environment.

Specwall panels offer a glimpse of what is possible when you choose more sustainable materials for a development to meet tightening regulations. Our A2 panel achieved its EPD certification in 2023 and can help make your development more sustainable and circular.

As well as sending less than 2% of the product to landfill, Specwall panels are reusable, resistant to damage and can incorporate off-cuts on site. Anything that isn’t used can be recycled. And all of this can be achieved with inherent fire, acoustic and insulation values.

Most importantly, Specwall panels have a much lower carbon emissions over their lifecycle as shown by this OneClick comparison which compares our product to other commonly used wall materials:

  • 75mm Specwall A2 panel – 15.74 kgCO2e
  • 100mm Specwall A2 panel – 20.77 kgCO2e
  • Blockwork – 27.87 kgCO2e
  • BG Gyproc Fireline – 59.14 kgCO2e

Want to learn more about Specwall and how it can make your building more sustainable in a sector where regulations are getting tighter all the time?

Get in touch with the team today to find out more.

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