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Fire safety in the
sustainability assessment of buildings
Chris Hamans – ESC
Fire Forum 2012; Brussels; 18-10-2012
http://www.hamans.com
Fire safety:
the unknown sustainability indicator
• Sustainability and fire safety: not yet integrated
However:
• Fire safety issues can have a huge impact on the sustainability of
buildings
– Environmental impacts
– Social impacts
– Economic impacts
Fire statistics:
new buildings overrepresented
• Insurance damage; NL statistics
„the expensive fires” are newly constructed buildings
• We want to build more sustainable buildings:
– More energy efficient
– “lean” and “light” buildings – resource efficient
– More environmentally friendly products
• But is fire destroing our sustainability objectives ?
– A building fire: decreased sustainability
Buildings have changed
• Many new and more combustible materials
– within the building envelope (non-building related materials)
– as part of the load bearing and non-loadbearing construction
• Lower heat transmittance = well insulated =
rapidly development and higher temperature increase in case of fire
• Improved air tightness + mechanical ventilation =
no natural exhaust of smoke and toxic gasses
Don‟t blame
Energy Efficiency, however ...
• Increased demands for the energy efficiency of buildings
– Reducing energy losses (EPBD Directive):
• Airtightness
• Minimised energy transmittance = Increased insulation thickness:
may lead to increased fire load
• Proven*: an increased risk
– 1950 - from ignition of a fire to flash over = 15 min.
– 1985 - from ignition of a fire to flash over = 5 min.
– 2012 - from ignition of a fire to flash over = 3 min.
* SRSA (Swedish Rescue Services Agency)
Fire Safety and Sustainability
• Big fires have a devastating effect on all three dimensions of
sustainability.
ENV SOC ECON
Technical design
Functional design
sustainability
Fire and the Social
dimension of Sustainability
• Annually over 70,000 severe fire related injuries in Europe :
– Hospitalisation ; high costs for medical treatment and counseling
• loss of lives
• need for long-term burn wounds treatment
• serious disabling
• long-term effects of toxic smoke inhalation
• hugely traumatic for both the victims and their families
• stress and insecurity of losing one‟s residence, or
workplace, with resulting unemployment, should not be
underestimated
Smoke: most fatal social impact
• 8 out of 10 fire deaths are due to inhalation of smoke
and toxic gasses indicate also that smoke toxicity
should be taken seriously.
• Moreover, 30% of fire related deaths and injuries
worldwide concern children.
SOCENV
Next to the social
there is an environmental impact
Fire and the Environmental
dimension of Sustainability
• large fires cause serious environmental impacts by
emissions to air, water and soil and generate waste
– severe local environmental damage caused by water run-off,
soot, ash, and smoke pollution,
– waste and waste treatment, landfill
– loss of all the raw materials ( no sustainable resource
management)
– rebuilding represents further material depletion, energy use
and additional emissions.
Fire and the Environmental
dimension of Sustainability (2)
• Large fires in light manufacturing plants have been
estimated to increase life time carbon emissions by 14%.
• Sweden: annual emissions of unburned particles from
building fires have been calculated to be equal to the
total of emissions from all commercial transport in that
year.
Undermining sustainability
• Fire is given more potential to destroy all sustainability
ambitions!
– Burning down the lifetime claims of all
building related and non-building related goods
– Wasting natural resources, increasing emissions, .....
– Rebuilding: extra natural resources, energy, emissions,
ENV ECON
And then there are
the economic aspects
Fire and the Economic
dimension of Sustainability
• Estim. ~1% of European GDP is lost due to fire
annually.
– Moreover, 50% of businesses hit by large fires go bankrupt
causing unemployment and the loss of local and national tax
revenue.
– Netherlands: occurrence of big fires – damage: > 1 mil. € *)
*) Nibra - Miljoenenbranden (2003) ISBN 90-5643-259-1
major (66%) impact in the fire development
and fire acceleration from:
• structural detailing
• furnishing
Fire is a threath to sustainability
• EPBD/EED/Renovation will increase –
the fire safety risks will increase!
• Fire fighters have to deal with existing buildings – existing buildings
behave very differently in fire!
• Recent fires on ETICS systems in France, China and Berlin have
illustrated new risks.
 ENVIRONMENTAL + SOCIAL + ECONOMIC
 SOCIAL ( + CSR)
 ENVIRONMENTAL + SOCIAL + ECONOMIC
Standards,
programs and building rating schemes
• Standards for quantification
• Programs for qualification
– Quantifying
– Selecting criteria
– Qualifying and Rating based on selected criteria
• EPD and Building Programs
– Products: IBU, MRPI, Green Guide (BREEAM), .........???
– Building rating programs: BREEAM, HQE, LEED,
EN15643-part1: General Framework for the Sustainability Assessment of Buildings
EN15978
Environmental
Assessment of
Buildings
EN15804
Environmental
Assessment of
Products
CEN TR 15941
EN 15942
EN15643-2 EN15643-3 EN15643-4
prEN16309
Assessment of Social
Buildings Performance
workitem
Assessment of Economic
Building Performance
Work in progress
• All Framework standards published
• All environmental standards published
Status CEN TC350 standards
Status 01-09-2012
19
CEN TC350 standards
ENV SOC ECON
sustainability
CEN TC350
standards for works
CEN TC350
standards only quantify
aspects and impacts
20
CEN TC350 standards
Sustainability starts with the Basic Works Requirements !
• Without meeting the functional needs there is no sustainability
• Without meeting the technical needs there is no sustainability
Technical design
Functional design
CPR
305/2011
EuroCodes
21
CEN TC350 standards for quantification
Sustainability starts with the Basic Works Requirements !
• Without meeting the functional needs there is no sustainability
• Without meeting the technical needs there is no sustainability
ENV SOC ECON
Technical design
Functional design
sustainability
CPR
305/2011
EuroCodes
CEN TC350
standards for works
CEN TC350
standards only quantify
aspects and impacts
22
And yet:
• not that much on fire safety in the
sustainability assessment of buildings
............
– Not in the assessment of the environmental performance of the
building
– Not in the economic performance assessment
However
– the social aspects of the level of fire safety are assessed in a
checklist procedure: prEN16309
Why not ?
• Principles in the sustainability aspects of products and buildings:
– Based on regular conditions
– Assessing the impact – NOT the avoided impact
• Fire:
– Fire is not/should not be the “regular condition”
– Fire Safety is about “avoiding impact”
• However:
– Fire safety: a functional performance to resist fire
25
Fire safety aspect
in EN15643-3 and prEN16309
• Aspect category “safety/security”:
– Indicator: resistance to climate change,
– Indicator: security against intruders and vandalism,
– Indicator: security against interruptions of utility supply
(e.g. electricity, water, district heating, etc.).
– Indicator: Fire safety
• “the capacity of the building to provide
resistance to fire and its consequential effects
in respect of both the building users and
resistance to fire damage of the built asset.”
Fire Safety in prEN16309
– The standards assess the building performance as far as they exceed
the minimum legal level of fire safety that is required.
Having a higher level of fire safety will contribute to the sustainability of
the building
Exceeding
the minimum requirements
• The standard does not provide precise measures, but point at
examples of provisions for increased fire safety, such as:
– stricter classification for reaction to fire according to EN 13501-1;
– using materials/design that will result in reduced levels of toxic gases and/or
droplets;
– higher fire resistance classes of building elements than required by
prevailing regulations;
– installation or enhancement of smoke control systems using approved
components and approved competent persons for the design, installation and
maintenance;
A non exhaustive list
Exceeding
the minimum requirements (2)
• The standards do not provide precise measures, but point at examples
of provisions for increased fire safety, such as:
– installation or enhancement of fire detection and alarm systems using
approved components and approved competent persons for the
design, installation and maintenance;
– installation or enhancement of fire extinguishing systems using approved
components and approved competent persons
for the design, installation and maintenance;
– optimisation of the size of smoke and fire compartments;
– improved design of the means of escape
(including consideration of disabled people);
– improved access and facilities for fire fighters.
However .......
There are other sustainability assessments than
the sustainability assessment of BUILDINGS
Corporate Social Responsibility
• An aspect of sustainability
– Not of the building
– Of policies and (management) decissions
• Not in the CEN TC350 standards
• In EN-ISO-26000
Corporate Social Responsibility
• CSR also should include
the taking of the right
MANAGEMENT DECISSIONS:
– Maximum firesafe DESIGN
– Material / Product CHOICE
– CONTROL – VERIFICATION of
workmanship / installation
New build
&
Maintenance
&
Repair
&
Refurbishment
&
Renovation
Conclusion 1:
fire safety & sustainability
• Within the limits of the principle approach and the scope
CEN TC350 standards assess the social aspects of the degree of
firesafety of the building.
– A checklist of building performance related to fire safety
– No value judgement
– No risk assessment
– Under “normal” (building use) conditions
Conclusion 2:
fire safety & sustainability
• The other sustainability assessment:
Fire Safety should be an evaluation aspect in the
CSR – Corporate Social Responsibilty –
assessment and declaration
Thank you
Chris Hamans
More info on CEN TC350 standards? See:
• YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL7A9F5EB6874887BF
• SlideShare: http://www.slideshare.net/search/slideshow?searchfrom=header&q=CEN+TC350
• CEN TC350: www.afnor.org/centc350
• www.hamans.com

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Fire safety in the sustainability assessment of buildings

  • 1. Fire safety in the sustainability assessment of buildings Chris Hamans – ESC Fire Forum 2012; Brussels; 18-10-2012 http://www.hamans.com
  • 2. Fire safety: the unknown sustainability indicator • Sustainability and fire safety: not yet integrated However: • Fire safety issues can have a huge impact on the sustainability of buildings – Environmental impacts – Social impacts – Economic impacts
  • 3. Fire statistics: new buildings overrepresented • Insurance damage; NL statistics „the expensive fires” are newly constructed buildings • We want to build more sustainable buildings: – More energy efficient – “lean” and “light” buildings – resource efficient – More environmentally friendly products • But is fire destroing our sustainability objectives ? – A building fire: decreased sustainability
  • 4. Buildings have changed • Many new and more combustible materials – within the building envelope (non-building related materials) – as part of the load bearing and non-loadbearing construction • Lower heat transmittance = well insulated = rapidly development and higher temperature increase in case of fire • Improved air tightness + mechanical ventilation = no natural exhaust of smoke and toxic gasses
  • 5. Don‟t blame Energy Efficiency, however ... • Increased demands for the energy efficiency of buildings – Reducing energy losses (EPBD Directive): • Airtightness • Minimised energy transmittance = Increased insulation thickness: may lead to increased fire load • Proven*: an increased risk – 1950 - from ignition of a fire to flash over = 15 min. – 1985 - from ignition of a fire to flash over = 5 min. – 2012 - from ignition of a fire to flash over = 3 min. * SRSA (Swedish Rescue Services Agency)
  • 6. Fire Safety and Sustainability • Big fires have a devastating effect on all three dimensions of sustainability. ENV SOC ECON Technical design Functional design sustainability
  • 7. Fire and the Social dimension of Sustainability • Annually over 70,000 severe fire related injuries in Europe : – Hospitalisation ; high costs for medical treatment and counseling • loss of lives • need for long-term burn wounds treatment • serious disabling • long-term effects of toxic smoke inhalation • hugely traumatic for both the victims and their families • stress and insecurity of losing one‟s residence, or workplace, with resulting unemployment, should not be underestimated
  • 8. Smoke: most fatal social impact • 8 out of 10 fire deaths are due to inhalation of smoke and toxic gasses indicate also that smoke toxicity should be taken seriously. • Moreover, 30% of fire related deaths and injuries worldwide concern children.
  • 9. SOCENV Next to the social there is an environmental impact
  • 10. Fire and the Environmental dimension of Sustainability • large fires cause serious environmental impacts by emissions to air, water and soil and generate waste – severe local environmental damage caused by water run-off, soot, ash, and smoke pollution, – waste and waste treatment, landfill – loss of all the raw materials ( no sustainable resource management) – rebuilding represents further material depletion, energy use and additional emissions.
  • 11. Fire and the Environmental dimension of Sustainability (2) • Large fires in light manufacturing plants have been estimated to increase life time carbon emissions by 14%. • Sweden: annual emissions of unburned particles from building fires have been calculated to be equal to the total of emissions from all commercial transport in that year.
  • 12. Undermining sustainability • Fire is given more potential to destroy all sustainability ambitions! – Burning down the lifetime claims of all building related and non-building related goods – Wasting natural resources, increasing emissions, ..... – Rebuilding: extra natural resources, energy, emissions,
  • 13. ENV ECON And then there are the economic aspects
  • 14. Fire and the Economic dimension of Sustainability • Estim. ~1% of European GDP is lost due to fire annually. – Moreover, 50% of businesses hit by large fires go bankrupt causing unemployment and the loss of local and national tax revenue. – Netherlands: occurrence of big fires – damage: > 1 mil. € *) *) Nibra - Miljoenenbranden (2003) ISBN 90-5643-259-1 major (66%) impact in the fire development and fire acceleration from: • structural detailing • furnishing
  • 15. Fire is a threath to sustainability • EPBD/EED/Renovation will increase – the fire safety risks will increase! • Fire fighters have to deal with existing buildings – existing buildings behave very differently in fire! • Recent fires on ETICS systems in France, China and Berlin have illustrated new risks.  ENVIRONMENTAL + SOCIAL + ECONOMIC  SOCIAL ( + CSR)  ENVIRONMENTAL + SOCIAL + ECONOMIC
  • 16. Standards, programs and building rating schemes • Standards for quantification • Programs for qualification – Quantifying – Selecting criteria – Qualifying and Rating based on selected criteria • EPD and Building Programs – Products: IBU, MRPI, Green Guide (BREEAM), .........??? – Building rating programs: BREEAM, HQE, LEED,
  • 17. EN15643-part1: General Framework for the Sustainability Assessment of Buildings EN15978 Environmental Assessment of Buildings EN15804 Environmental Assessment of Products CEN TR 15941 EN 15942 EN15643-2 EN15643-3 EN15643-4 prEN16309 Assessment of Social Buildings Performance workitem Assessment of Economic Building Performance Work in progress • All Framework standards published • All environmental standards published Status CEN TC350 standards Status 01-09-2012 19
  • 18. CEN TC350 standards ENV SOC ECON sustainability CEN TC350 standards for works CEN TC350 standards only quantify aspects and impacts 20
  • 19. CEN TC350 standards Sustainability starts with the Basic Works Requirements ! • Without meeting the functional needs there is no sustainability • Without meeting the technical needs there is no sustainability Technical design Functional design CPR 305/2011 EuroCodes 21
  • 20. CEN TC350 standards for quantification Sustainability starts with the Basic Works Requirements ! • Without meeting the functional needs there is no sustainability • Without meeting the technical needs there is no sustainability ENV SOC ECON Technical design Functional design sustainability CPR 305/2011 EuroCodes CEN TC350 standards for works CEN TC350 standards only quantify aspects and impacts 22
  • 21. And yet: • not that much on fire safety in the sustainability assessment of buildings ............ – Not in the assessment of the environmental performance of the building – Not in the economic performance assessment However – the social aspects of the level of fire safety are assessed in a checklist procedure: prEN16309
  • 22. Why not ? • Principles in the sustainability aspects of products and buildings: – Based on regular conditions – Assessing the impact – NOT the avoided impact • Fire: – Fire is not/should not be the “regular condition” – Fire Safety is about “avoiding impact” • However: – Fire safety: a functional performance to resist fire
  • 23. 25
  • 24. Fire safety aspect in EN15643-3 and prEN16309 • Aspect category “safety/security”: – Indicator: resistance to climate change, – Indicator: security against intruders and vandalism, – Indicator: security against interruptions of utility supply (e.g. electricity, water, district heating, etc.). – Indicator: Fire safety • “the capacity of the building to provide resistance to fire and its consequential effects in respect of both the building users and resistance to fire damage of the built asset.”
  • 25. Fire Safety in prEN16309 – The standards assess the building performance as far as they exceed the minimum legal level of fire safety that is required. Having a higher level of fire safety will contribute to the sustainability of the building
  • 26. Exceeding the minimum requirements • The standard does not provide precise measures, but point at examples of provisions for increased fire safety, such as: – stricter classification for reaction to fire according to EN 13501-1; – using materials/design that will result in reduced levels of toxic gases and/or droplets; – higher fire resistance classes of building elements than required by prevailing regulations; – installation or enhancement of smoke control systems using approved components and approved competent persons for the design, installation and maintenance; A non exhaustive list
  • 27. Exceeding the minimum requirements (2) • The standards do not provide precise measures, but point at examples of provisions for increased fire safety, such as: – installation or enhancement of fire detection and alarm systems using approved components and approved competent persons for the design, installation and maintenance; – installation or enhancement of fire extinguishing systems using approved components and approved competent persons for the design, installation and maintenance; – optimisation of the size of smoke and fire compartments; – improved design of the means of escape (including consideration of disabled people); – improved access and facilities for fire fighters.
  • 28. However ....... There are other sustainability assessments than the sustainability assessment of BUILDINGS
  • 29. Corporate Social Responsibility • An aspect of sustainability – Not of the building – Of policies and (management) decissions • Not in the CEN TC350 standards • In EN-ISO-26000
  • 30. Corporate Social Responsibility • CSR also should include the taking of the right MANAGEMENT DECISSIONS: – Maximum firesafe DESIGN – Material / Product CHOICE – CONTROL – VERIFICATION of workmanship / installation New build & Maintenance & Repair & Refurbishment & Renovation
  • 31. Conclusion 1: fire safety & sustainability • Within the limits of the principle approach and the scope CEN TC350 standards assess the social aspects of the degree of firesafety of the building. – A checklist of building performance related to fire safety – No value judgement – No risk assessment – Under “normal” (building use) conditions
  • 32. Conclusion 2: fire safety & sustainability • The other sustainability assessment: Fire Safety should be an evaluation aspect in the CSR – Corporate Social Responsibilty – assessment and declaration
  • 33. Thank you Chris Hamans More info on CEN TC350 standards? See: • YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL7A9F5EB6874887BF • SlideShare: http://www.slideshare.net/search/slideshow?searchfrom=header&q=CEN+TC350 • CEN TC350: www.afnor.org/centc350 • www.hamans.com

Editor's Notes

  1. Annually over 70,000 severe fire related injuries in Europe :Hospitalisation ; high costs for medical treatment and counseling– reason enough to take action wherever we can to raise awareness of the risks of fire and to make fire-safety in buildings a priority across Europe.loss of life, need for long-term burn wounds treatment, serious disabling long-term effects of toxic smoke inhalation hugely traumatic for both the victims and their families. stress and insecurity of losing one’s residence, or workplace, with resulting unemployment, should not be underestimated.
  2. The sustainability assessment quantifies impacts and aspects to assess the environmental, social and economic performance of buildings using quantitative and qualitative indicators, both of which are measured without value judgements.The purpose of the suite of standards is to enable comparability of the results of assessments.
  3. But first this:If a building does not meet the needs for use, then the building and all products and materials in the building envelope and inside cannot be sustainable. Sustainability also starts with fullfilling the Basic Works Requirements. The European Construction Products Regulation (305/2011) defines 7 Basic Works Requirements. If for example the 1st Basic Work requirements - Mechanical resistance and stability – is not fulfilled, the building collapse or deformations hinder the functioning of the activities in the building, then all products used in the building construction and in the building interior, are no longer sustainable. If the building or part of the building for example catches fires because Basic Work requirement nr 2 – Safety in case of fire – is not fulfilled, all sustainability efforts for building and products become worthless.So: sustainability starts with the Basic Works Requirements; with a good functional and technical design and construction!
  4. But once the functional and technical design is made , and realised, this has an impact on the environment, on the society and the economics.Sustainability is based on the solutions for meeting the functional and technical needs and measured in 3 dimensions: environmental performance, social performance and economical performance.The CEN TC350 standards allow measuring on these 3 dimensions of sustainability. The standards do not define what is sustainable and what not. They do not clasify or give ratings, they only quantify.
  5. The CEN TC350 standards form of a suite of the European Standards, written by CEN/TC 350, that providea system for the sustainability assessment of buildings using a life cycle approach.