Sustainable Architecture, also known as "Green Building" or "Green Architecture", is a general term that describes environmentally-conscious design techniques in the field of architecture.
Like all manufactured products, the production and use of precast concrete building systems imposes environmental demands. Precast concrete offers a dramatic range of colours, finishes and unlimited design possibilities difficult to match with any other material, while creating structures that can provide superior environmental and energy performance from a life cycle perspective. Precast concrete offers a competitive building solution based on first cost, long-term economic benefits, energy efficiency, lower maintenance and overall operating costs as well as opportunities for future reuse when the occupancy of a building changes.
Three pillars of sustainability
The 2005 World Summit on Social Development identified sustainable development goals, such as economic development, social development and environmental protection. This view has been expressed as an illustration using three overlapping ellipses indicating that the three pillars of sustainability are not mutually exclusive and can be mutually reinforcing. The three pillars have served as a common ground for numerous sustainability standards and certification systems in recent years, in particular in the construction industry. Some sustainability experts and practitioners have illustrated four pillars of sustainability, or a quadruple bottom line. One such pillar is future generations, which emphasizes the long-term thinking associated with sustainability.
Sustainable development consists of balancing local and global efforts to meet basic human needs without destroying or degrading the natural environment. The question then becomes how to represent the relationship between those needs and the environment.
CPCI Social Responsibility Policy
Respecting customs, culture and values in the communities in which we operate
We consider operational excellence to include more than a return to our shareholders; it also considers our employees and their families, the communities where we work and the impact on our environment. Our Corporate Social Responsibility commitment aims to achieve a balance of economic prosperity, environmental stewardship and social responsibility that extends beyond the economic life of our operations.
- We believe in building relationships within the communities in which we operate.
- We base our principles on accountability, transparency, ethical behaviour, human rights and respect for stakeholder interest.
- We ensure that personnel are trained in the above-mentioned principles and that a continual awareness program is in place to support that training.
- We have established a CPCI Sustainability Committee which is responsible for directing our sustainability performance.
The North American Precast Concrete Industry Sustainability Plant Program Charter Member Declaration on Sustainability acknowledges the need to go beyond legislation and take voluntary actions to make its products and operations more sustainable, and commits that from this date it will do this by working towards the adoptions of the principles of the North American Precast Concrete Industry Sustainability Plant Program.