The International Living Future Institute launched Declare, a "nutrition-label" for building materials that aims to transform the marketplace through transparency and open communication.
Declare aligns with the Living Building Challenge by providing product transparency in support of the program's Red List and Appropriate Sourcing Imperatives, streamlining material documentation and project certification. Select products from leading green building manufacturers have already been listed in the database. Accepted products may display their Declare label on their products - signaling to the world their leadership position in the marketplace.
"Toxic chemicals and compounds are pervasive in building products, endangering human health and the resilience of our ecosystems. They not only harm building occupants, they cause damage all along their lifecycle," commented Amanda Sturgeon, Vice President of the International Living Future Institute and Director of the Living Building Challenge. "Despite a growing mountain of research demonstrating the detrimental impact of toxic building materials and increasing public awareness of this fact, change has been slow."
Sturgeon says architects and engineers want to make the right decisions when designing and constructing buildings, and innovative product manufacturers should be recognized for developing ecologically sound products. But green washing and a lack of verifiable product information is impeding progress. The Declare label will likely result in increased business for those making compliant products.
Declare fills this information gap and accelerates market transformation by answering three simple questions. Where does a product come from? What is it made of? And where does it go at the end of its life? By providing a clear ingredients list for building products, Declare helps consumers make conscious, informed decisions, and provides manufactures of ecologically sound products as a way to demonstrate market leadership and secure a competitive advantage.