British BREEAM (Building Research Establishment's Environmental Assessment Method) is an approach for promoting and certifying sustainable buildings.
Motivation for having BREEAM certification of a building is to achieve higher value of a building in balance, or better sales price or better rental price with sustainability as additional argument, or to promote public perception of the company operating a BREEAM certified building, or to promote environment and health.
A study of RICS showed the economic trade-off of green buildings.
Credits are awarded in ten categories according to performance. These credits are then added together to produce a singleoverall score on a scale of Pass, Good, Very Good, Excellent and Outstanding.
BREEAM was established in the UK. There are national versions in a number of countries:
BREEAM and products
Products cannot be BREEAM certified. Only buildings can. A product can be certified by BRE and listed in BRE Global's Green Guide based on its environmental profile for showing that the product can be used in a BREEAM assessment to help achieve credits, but low emissions are not an element of that certification.
Use of low emitting materials is helping to achieve points for improving indoor air quality. Motivation of product manufacturers to show that their product can support collecting BREEAM points ("BREEAM compliance") is that they can sell their products to those who want to achieve BREEAM certification of their building. But BREEAM does not foresee any type of "BREEAM compliance" attestation of a product. See BREEAM UK / International and BREEAM Norway for details.
Products may qualify for good environmental rating in general with an Environmental Profile including a Life Cycle Assessment. Such rating can lead to listing of a product in a database of BREEAM qualified products.
A draft BREEAM International New Construction 2016 document is out for public comment until 1 February 2016. The methodology for assessing emissions from products has undergone a basic revision, see "Hea 02".
Since late August 2015, BREEAM International and BREEAM UK recognize Indoor Air Comfort, EMICODE and more VOC rating schemes as proof of BREEAM compliance. Separate documentation for BREEAM is needed no longer if compliance with Indoor Air Comfort or any other one of the referenced rating schemes was show. This will ease the identification of compliant materials for BREEAM certified construction projects, and it will support manufacturers in demonstrating BREEAM compliance of their products. For more details, please see our VOC Blog and a common press release.
If a manufacturer needs VOC emission testing for markets in several countries, then Eurofins can help saving money by combining all required testing into one test setup. This service is unique in whole world. No single other testing laboratory is approved for VOC emission chamber testing both for US purposes and for European labels such as Blue Angel, EMICODE and M1, combining this with a world-wide valid ISO 17025 accreditation.
Contact to VOC Testing Laboratories
Please see here contact information of Eurofins VOC testing laboratories in Europe, China and Japan: