Successful international presentation of the brick and tile industry at the World Sustainable Building Conference 08 in Melbourne

“Clay is green and comes in all colours“. With this slogan, scientific contributions and a provocative question at the exhibition stand, the brick and tile industry made itself seen and heard at the largest and most significant event on the subject of “sustainable building”, under the responsibility of the European association Tiles and Bricks Europe (TBE).
More than 2 000 participants from around the world attended the “World Sustainable Building Conference 08” in Melbourne from the 21st to the 25th September 2008 in order to present current developments in this area, to exchange ideas, to build new international networks or to cultivate old ones at the conference as well as at the collateral exhibition.
The European Association Tiles and Bricks Europe (TBE) initiated an international presentation of the brick and tile industry, organized and hosted an impressive exhibition stand together with the national brick associations of South Africa, Australia and North America. Furthermore the significant role assumed by the brick and tile industry in the future development of sustainable building was presented by poster presentations and a lecture.
At the exhibition stand a large banner, which could be seen from afar, asked the provocative question whether energy efficiency on the one hand, or health, comfort and safety on the other hand, represent the most significant criteria for a sustainable building. A touch screen invited conference attendants to choose one or the other.
The objective was to broach the issue of energy efficiency alone being widely held as the primary sustainability criterion – and to question this view. The resulting conversations and discussions were both interesting and fruitful. It was generally acknowledged that energy efficiency could never be more important than health, comfort and especially the safety of a building. This meant that the majority of conference participants confirmed the significance of just those sustainability criteria, in which our products show an excellent performance. In general it was seen as very positive that the brick and tile industry is committed as an internationally networked pro-active participant in the domain of sustainable building. The scientific contributions during the conference were generally of a high standard and demonstrated how the issue of “sustainable building” is being advanced worldwide with great vigour. The presentations delivered insight into the fact that all sectors are developing new building materials to meet the increasing demands in regard to sustainability. Sustainability assessment tools are being advanced or newly developed and more rigorous sustainability requirements for the building industry are being established on national and international level.
The pro-active participation in this race will become increasingly essential immediately and in the future also for the brick manufacturing industry to ensure that it stays in the game. The next “World Sustainable Building Conference” will take place in 2011 in London, an excellent chance for the brick and tile industry to position itself accordingly. The subject of “sustainable building” will be dealt with in detail in Zi Brick and Tile Industry International 1-2/2009, whereby the technical lectures held in Melbourne will also be presented.
– Dipl.-Ing. Christine Vieira Paschoalique –

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