New life cycle analysis data for circulation area surfacing

Betonverband Straße, Landschaft, Garten e. V. (SLG), 53179 Bonn, Germany

Environmental protection, climate change, resource utilisation and sustainability – issues such as these are taking on increasingly greater significance in the construction industry – and this applies equally well to road and path construction. In other words, the environmental impact of construction materials and methods, and e.g. their associated energy consumption and the matter of their carbon footprint, is com- ing more and more to the fore in planning construction measures for both the public and private sectors. New outside facilities for uses of many varied kinds are newly created or refashioned day after day in the Federal Republic of Germany. In the course of this development, ecological parameters – as a result of climate change – are continually gaining in importance. A guidance paper on sustainable construc- tion was published at the beginning of 2001 [1]. With its introduction, governmental strategy was implemented for construction measures at a federal level that gears the planning, construction and utilisation of buildings and properties towards sustainability and underpins the same with specific, measurable targets. In February 2012, the Federal Ministry for Transport, Construction and Urban Development issued its guide- lines “Sustainably planned outside facilities on federal properties” [2]. This gives recommendations as regards planning, construction and management that can be employed for regional and communal as well as for private construction projects. Construction always means intervention in the environment that has an impact at both a local and a global level. On account of this – in keeping with the principles of sustainability –, the aim in construction work should be to minimise negative environmental impacts and rein- force positive ecological effects to the greatest possible extent. This means that life cycle analysis data for construction materials, systems and methods is becoming increasingly important and will continue gaining in significance. At the beginning of 2009, the Betonverband Strasse, Landschaft, Garten e.V. (SLG) published its first comparative life cycle analysis concerning superstructure design using the example of an estate access road based on study [3]. In the course of 2011 and 2012, there followed publications of comparative life cycle analysis data in respect of superstructure designs for selected typical fields of application based on a complementary study [4]. Updating the com- parative life cycle analysis data previously published by the SLG became necessary due to alterations in the regulations – both in the area of road construction i.e. the RStO [5], as well as in respect of the computational rules for life cycle analyses – and is available in the form of a comprehensive, approximately 130 page study [6].

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