Discover and debate: Concrete solutions for sustainable construction

On 27 May 2014, The Concrete Initiative was officially launched!

 "Discover and debate: concrete solutions for sustainable construction" was the focus of this event, which was held at Autoworld in Brussels.  More details about the event, as well as links which you may find of interest, can be found below.

Event summary 

On 27 May 2014, the European concrete sector gathered in Brussels to launch The Concrete Initiative.  Bringing together key stakeholders at EU level, the launch centred around a high level debate on sustainable construction.

The Concrete Initiative brings together the cement and concrete sectors.  It is composed of CEMBUREAU (the European Cement Association) BIBM (the European Federation of Precast Concrete) and ERMCO (the European Ready-Mixed Concrete Organization).

Following an introduction by Peter Hoddinott, CEMBUREAU President, the keynote address was given by video by Janez Potočnik, European Commissioner for the Environment. In his address, the Commissioner highlighted the Commission’s future work on resource-efficient buildings, and welcomed this new contribution to a more sustainable Europe from The Concrete Initiative.

A lively panel debate, moderated by Jacki Davis, was held on the concrete solutions for sustainable construction, with distinguished panellists Antonio Paparella, DG ENTR, European Commission; Richard Baron, OECD; Alberto Bruno, MC Architects; Prof. Guillaume Habert, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology; and Mikael Svanberg, European Fire Fighters Unions Alliance.

The panellists’ discussion, enhanced by many interventions from the audience, threw up interesting ideas for future work. These included the need for a whole life cycle approach; concrete’s role in the renovation of Europe’s building stock; recycling of construction and demolition waste; the role of low-carbon-economy roadmaps being developed by industry; and the astonishing lack of harmonised fire regulation in the EU.

The event also saw the launch of The Concrete Initiative video, publication, and manifesto.

Closing remarks were given by Peter Hoddinott, CEMBUREAU President; Patrick Declerck, BIBM President; and Stein Tosterud, ERMCO President, after which the participants were invited to a networking cocktail.

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