New Zealand Green Building Council recognises best practice PVC point

Issue 39 – June 2012

The New Zealand Plastics Industry Pipes Association (PIPA) recently announced that the New Zealand Green Building Council (NZGBC) has introduced a revised PVC Credit that awards Green Star points for PVC pipe complying with Best Practice Guidelines for PVC in the Built Environment (the Guidelines). Green Star is the predominant environmental rating tool for New Zealand buildings. The new credit will become effective from 1 July 2012.

The guidelines were developed by the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) and the GBCA PVC Expert Reference Panel as part of the Australian 'PVC minimisation' credit review. The NZGBC states that adopting 'the revised PVC Credit allows for the opportunity to minimise the environmental and health risk impacts of the PVC life cycle by the inclusion of minimum compliance requirements in [the] PVC manufacture and end-of-life management of PVC product.'

PIPA members are currently obtaining independent third-party verification to demonstrate that their products fully comply with the Guidelines and hope to have certified product available to market by 1 July 2012. This verification will provide the New Zealand construction market with a simple way to ensure they are specifying PVC products that have been manufactured, and can be reclaimed for recycling, in accordance with environmental best practice.

To demonstrate compliance PIPA members will provide either:

  • an audit compliance certificate issued within the past 6 months by a JASANZ (or equivalent) accredited certification body providing written assurance of compliance with the Guidelines and their inclusion within an environmental management system: ISO 14001, or
  • a product declaration and audit certificate: that the producer-specific and product performance-specific criteria of the Guidelines for PVC have been met for a specific product that has been independently audited within the past 6 months by either an accredited auditor registered by RABQSA or another equivalent national or international auditor, or a JAS-ANZ (or equivalent) accredited certification body.

As part of the commitment to meeting these requirements a PVC pipe recycling service can now be accessed via PIPA members in Auckland, Palmerston North, Christchurch, and Ashburton.

Summarised from a Plastics Industry Pipes Association media release 9 May 2012.


Published in building.