Sustainable Building Solutions

Boral - A Brand for Sustainable Solutions
Boral: A Brand for Sustainable Building Solutions
Boral’s 100-year old quarry at Greystanes, NSW converted to a world-class residential community.
  Boral building products and construction materials are designed to meet the needs of our many customers, making a positive and lasting contribution to the way people live: In particular - the requirements of the increasingly demanding building codes and regulations in relation to key environmental and sustainability measures. Boral is committed to sustainability and the desire to assist the building and construction industry including builders, developers, architects and consumers to achieve their sustainability goals.

Boral is one of Australia's biggest players in the building materials industry with more than 500 operating sites around Australia, so our emphasis on sustainable processes has a profound impact on the environment. The company has developed environmental management plans for each division specifically addressing energy management and greenhouse gas emissions, water conservation, waste minimisation and utilisation and site remediation
and rehabilitation.
 
 
  Recycling, re-use and eco-efficiencyRecycling, re-use and eco-efficiencyRecycling, re-use and eco-efficiency   Recycling, re-use and eco-efficiency
Boral aims to cut down on the use of primary resources and promote the use of recycled materials. We are minimising packaging and ensuring all Boral products are durable and long-lasting with the amount of material reused or recycled in Boral's building products businesses increasing every year. In general, Boral businesses re-use or recycle between 34% and 100% of the production waste they generate. Boral Recycling in NSW recycles construction and demolition waste into a broad range of products, including road bases, specialty products and aggregates. Potential uses of residual wood fibre from Boral Timber manufacturing operations are also being investigated including plastic composites, compost and briquettes.

Energy usage and emissions
Energy conservation and climate change are key elements of Boral's environmental plans. Boral has been committed to reducing energy and related greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions for many years, Boral Cement has been a participant in the Greenhouse Challenge Plus (Program) since 1997 through a cooperative agreement with the Cement Industry Federation (CIF). In addition, Boral and other CIF members have developed the Greenhouse Energy Management System (GEMS) to address greenhouse issues by evaluating their position and offering practical solutions to reduce their emissions at both industry and company levels. Plant upgrades and alternative fuels programs have reduced unit emissions from Boral's cement operations (the principal contributor to greenhouse gas emissions) by 15 percent since 1990. Reductions in average greenhouse gas emissions per unit of production have also occurred in the Plasterboard and Masonry businesses.

Boral achieved a Gold Award in the Sustainable Energy Development Authority (SEDA) Energy Smart Business Program in NSW with the second largest energy reduction from 1998 through to 2004. Boral has also elected to be a benchmark participant as a Large User in the NSW Greenhouse Gas Abatement Scheme (GGAS) that aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with the production and use of electricity. (See story archive - 'Boral abates Greenhouse Gas'.)

Conserving water
In answer to Australia's dwindling water supplies, Boral is pursuing site-based approaches to reduce water consumption. In 2005/06, Boral consumed 2616 million litres (or 2.6 gigalitres) of town or mains water in its manufacturing and production processes in Australia and the USA. This is a notable reduction from 3.3 gigalitres consumed in 2004/05, reflecting increased levels of recycling, use of site collected water, and a general focus on conserving water.

Boral is also an active participant in the Every Drop Counts Business Water Conservation Program which helps industry save 20 million litres of water daily. (See story archive - 'Boral ensures Every Drop Counts'.) In particular, Boral Quarries at Emu Plains continued to reduce their town water consumption by 81% this year, a significant achievement that saw them recognised by Sydney Water as the 2005 Runner Up in the Every Drop Counts Business Program. "This is an outstanding effort and in a time of severe drought it is excellent to see industry playing its part in saving water." David Campbell, Water Utilities Minister, NSW.
 
 
  Products and services
Boral is a part of the lives of most Australians, whether in the home, at work or in public places and spaces such as roads, parks, shopping centres, schools and hospitals. With a comprehensive product portfolio including; bricks, polished concrete, terracotta roof tiles, clay pavers, timber flooring, home theatre wall and ceiling systems, plasterboard, glass doors and windows, low noise asphalt, plywood cladding and more, Boral is working closely with customers and industry bodies to provide building products and construction materials that support energy-rating systems for housing. Boral products such as Hydrapave, Green Concrete, PartiWALL, EurekaWALL, NuSoil and Envirocrete as well as Fly Ash and recycled aggregate, conserve energy, provide thermal and acoustic performance solutions or assist with water management.
 
 
  Concrete
Green concrete is produced from a range of recycled products and cement manufactured from alternative fuels. These products combine to produce premixed concrete with strengths that will perform equally as well, and in some cases better than traditional concrete.
Enviroblend is a blend of crushed demolition concrete and recycled asphalt pavement suitable for road construction.

  Boral Concrete  
 
  Plywood and Timber   Timber
Boral Timber contributes to the responsible management of Australia's beautiful and valuable hardwood timber resource by sourcing its logs from sustainably managed forests. The majority of logs are supplied by contracts with state governments who regulate hardwood logging to ensure forests are managed in a legitimately renewable way. Recently, Boral Timber invested over $25 million in a new engineered flooring factory to better utilise the hardwood resource for flooring applications. An engineered floor uses approximately four times less hardwood than traditional solid timber flooring.

Roofing
Boral Roofing produces a range of products and colours specifically to address energy efficiency and thermal performance, with the colour of the roofing a considerable factor in thermal performance. Most of Australia has a climate requiring the roof to limit heat gain rather than prevent heat loss. Experiments have shown light coloured tiles lower the air temperature in the roof space by up to 9 degrees compared to dark tiles.
 
 
  Clay Bricks
The relatively high mass of Clay bricks' provides excellent acoustic and thermal properties making them an ideal product when designing a comfortable "liveable" house with a minimum of heating and cooling. Cavity brick walls slow the swing in temperature from day to night - the building stays cool in summer and warm in winter. The Building Code of Australia recognises that less energy is required in heating and cooling a clay brick house and so permits, in some climate zones, an exemption from adding wall insulation in cavity brickwork buildings.

Managing biodiversity
Boral has significant land holdings, some of which contain remnant forest or grasslands that are the last remaining stand in that area or contain rare and endangered fauna. This has led to the proposed development of ecological reserves, in particular at quarries such as Narangba in Queensland and Deer Park and Montrose in Victoria.
  Nelsons Ridge Display Village  
 
 
Sources:
- Boral Sustainability Report 2006
- Boral Sustainable Building Solutions brochure - July 2006
- Sustainable Development & Environmental Management