On-Site Magazine

Concrete industry tackles sustainability challenges

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April 21, 2014 by On-Site Magazine

The Canadian Ready Mixed Concrete Association (CRMCA) has joined forces with their cement and concrete partners across Canada to establish the Concrete Council of Canada (CCC). The formation of the group was formally announced in October 2013, and its inaugural meeting was held on December 3, 2013. 

The Council brings together representatives of national and provincial associations from the full spectrum of cement and concrete manufacturers across Canada, including the precast concrete, ready mixed concrete, concrete pipe and concrete pavers sectors, as well as representatives from the engineering, architectural and ENGO communities.

The creation of the CCC stems from the cement and concrete industry’s recognition that a more integrated approach is needed to develop stronger relationships with key stakeholders to address society’s sustainability challenges. It also underscores the industry’s understanding that resilience and sustainability are important to its continued success and its determination to ensure the sustainability benefits of concrete are clearly understood.

In the few months since its inception, the Council has articulated its vision, mission and core values. It has defined key priority areas and goals, and laid the groundwork for members to work together to enhance sustainable infrastructure and construction.

With a vision to see concrete recognized as the sustainable construction material of choice, the Council’s mission is to communicate and enhance the social, environmental and economic value of concrete, concrete products and concrete systems in Canada. The members of the CCC are working towards coordination and alignment of priorities and activities that will amplify the impact of the respective programs of each industry sector, while leveraging the particular strengths and expertise of each organization. 

To fulfill its mission and achieve its vision, the Council will be focussing its efforts on the following priority areas and goals:

Advocacy: Ensure political and policy outcomes that are equitable for the concrete industry and enhance a more sustainable sector. 

Sustainable and Technical Advancement: Advancing the use of concrete as the preferred sustainable building material based on resilience, quality and lifecycle performance. 

Communications: Establish broad awareness of the benefits of concrete. 

Procurement and Contracting: Research new contract and procurement practices within the construction industry. 

Education: Provide effective educational programs designed to deepen practitioner familiarity and competency with concrete. 

Codes and Standards: Ensure federal and provincial building codes, model energy codes and appropriate standards reflect the sustainability and technical goals of the member industries. 

It may be an ambitious plan but the Council and its members are excited about the way forward. 

“Concrete is an essential piece of the puzzle in addressing sustainable development. It underpins much of our society—above, on and below ground—and provides the resilience our infrastructure requires to minimize the effects of both climate change and human activity,” said Robert Burak, CCC’s chairman. “The Council will enhance the capabilities of our industry to coordinate our efforts, both internally and externally, particularly with other key sectors and stakeholders to tackle the collective public challenge of building safe, sustainable and resilient infrastructure and communities for Canadians. 

For more information on the Concrete Council of Canada, visit www.rediscoverconcrete.ca. Send comments to editor@on-sitemag.com

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