The last meeting of the Consultative Commission on Industrial Change under the topic “Working with Asbestos in Energy Renovation” was attended by Johan D’Hooghe, vice president of the International Committee and member of the European Demolition Association who discussed best practices in the management of asbestos and the energy renovation.
This study group, organized by European Social and Economic Committee, focused on the revision of the energy performance in buildings directive because it will have a significant impact on economic activities in the construction sector by increasing the average rate of annual renovation and through the implementation of long-term renovation strategies in the Members States.
Johan D’Hooghe emphasized the importance of a pre-demolition audit, decontamination, dismantling, and demolition, not only related to asbestos but also with the energy renovation.
The main challenges set out from EDA were to establish a clearer regulatory framework, set up entrance barriers (to avoid any operator can start a company overnight), increase the knowledge and information about different types of hazardous substances and highlight the liabilities and the high level of responsibility that all the stakeholder of the industry have.
All this without forgetting the safety in any area of the construction and deconstruction (for the workers, users, and environment) and the need for engineering and knowledge work (audits, samples, reports, …), not only in demolition but also in rehabilitation and other phases of the building.
The report that will be made to sum up the conclusions of this meeting will be contributing to the dissemination and mainstreaming of innovative technologies and work techniques and will support recent policy developments at European level such as the energy performance in buildings directive by addressing the specific challenges related to harmful substances by promoting the mainstreaming of training on asbestos and other harmful substances particularly with a view to energy renovation.
Furthermore, it will explore the possibilities of digital tools to register the presence of harmful substances in buildings to protect workers today and in the future and review the state of the art scientific findings to provide evidence-based policy recommendations to workplace limit values and the recognition of occupational diseases.