Sustainable Maritime Interiors - 2022 Report

150 PRODUCTS AND MATER I ALS UNEP – Sustainable resource management nurtures biodiversity value Source: United Nations Environment Programme, BDNR 1 Source: BBC, Future Planet 2 Source: Indoor Air Quality Association, Volatile Organic Compounds and Gases 3 Source: The Living Building Challenge, The Red List Material sustainability topics Every year, approximately 100 billion tonnes of raw material are extracted from the earth. Around half of this is used in construction. The industry is responsible for a third of global waste and at least 40 per cent of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions. Much of the waste could be reused and repurposed.1 Chemicals Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are among the most harmful chemicals found in building materials, interior furnishing, cleaning products and personal care products. These carbon-based substances can cause chemical emissions as they evaporate. According to the Indoor Air Quality Association, there may be anywhere from 50 to hundreds of individual VOCs in the indoor air at any one time.2 Common VOCs include formaldehyde, decane, butoxyethanol, isopentane, limonene, styrene, xylenes, perchloroethylene, methylene, chloride, toluene and vinyl chloride. VOCs are among the chemicals on the Living Building Challenge (LBC) Red List, which details the materials, chemicals, and elements used in construction and known to pose the most serious risks to human health and the environment. The International Living Future Institute (ILFI) argues that these materials should be phased out of production.3