The digitization of EPDs

The Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology has become, over the years, essential for any design, be it addressed to a single product, or to a more complex system.

In fact, almost all the environmental sustainability rating systems of buildings and infrastructures (eg Leed, Envision) reward the presence of an LCA, as it allows the Project team to make informed choices aimed at sustainable products.

The presence of an environmental product declaration (EPD) allows, in fact, to easily view the environmental impacts of a product and the choice of the most suitable one for the sustainability of the work.

To meet the increasingly pressing demand of designers for sustainable products, and to optimize the calculation of the LCA of the work by the software prepared for the purpose, EPDItaly has promoted an important innovation, in Italy and in Europe.

To provide companies with EPDs published on the EPDItaly website the opportunity to share environmental data in a machine-readable format, which can then be read by the software that calculates the LCA of a work, EPDItaly has concluded the process preparation of its website (in the Italian version only, at the moment), for the digitization of the EPD published in the Italian system.

The intent of EPDItaly coincides with that of the technical working group InData Group, of which EPDItaly is part and in which it has actively worked on the definition of the machine-readable format called ILCD + EPD, which combines the information contained in the EPD documentation, available in pdf format with those requested by the European Commission – Joint Research Center – Institute for Environment and Sustainability.

The advantages of the ILCD + EPD format

The ILCD + EPD format contains more than 100 indications, among which the most relevant are listed:

Using the EPD Creator software, the above information was manually entered by EPDItaly technicians for some published EPDs and the result will be visible on the website www.epditaly.it and on the InData Group website.

EPD Creator transforms all the data entered into a table format and, after a validation process carried out at European level, assigns a unique code to the set of data, thus making them visible and downloadable in XML format from the online platform. EPD data feeds the European InData database to be used online in building design systems.

The advantages of digitalization can be visible on the building design process, as, in addition to the technical characteristics, environmental materials deriving from an EPD may also be available for each component component of the building.

EPDItaly technicians are available to illustrate the advantages of digitalization, to enhance products and investments in the field of sustainability.