Dec 14, 2010

Major Life Cycle Assessment study for American Hardwoods

PE INTERNATIONAL is currently undertaking the first phase of data collection for the ground breaking Study which will conform to the ISO14000 series of Standards for LCAs. Life Cycle Inventory data is being gathered for American hardwood lumber and veneer covering environmental impacts of every process from point of extraction through to delivery to the importers yard in Europe and East Asia.

The study will allow preparation of Environmental Products Declarations (EPDs) for American hardwood species and products. EPDs are widely recognised as the most effective method of communicating the full environmental profile of any product and are increasingly used as a basis for materials credits in green building rating systems like BREEAM and DGNB. The study will also include, as a discrete component, an assessment of the carbon footprint of using American hardwood lumber and veneers in Europe in line with the UK’s PAS 2050 standard and the international Greenhouse Gas Protocol.

For David Venables, European Director of AHEC ( the decision to invest in this new Study is hugely significant for the industry and vital for its future competitive edge in export markets, in a world where green specification is increasingly informed by a science-based approach.

He says: “This is a massive undertaking in both financial and logistical terms because the Study will encompass a wide range of operations and processes. Data collection will be needed from a variety of sectors, supply chain elements and geographical regions. What we want from this Study is comprehensive and independently assessed and verified information about the environmental impacts of the processes used to extract, produce and dispose of American hardwood products.”


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